The inaugural season of VIVO Pro Kabaddi had fans buzzing with excitement. And a team that entertained many with their astute defending was Bengaluru Bulls. The Grande City team went charging through the league, taking down team after team with their rock-solid defence. Their secret weapon was a man with a deadly ankle hold, who could also score points in raids with the same ease. Whenever he was on the mat, his team would always have a chance. And it was no surprise that he was soon known as the ‘One-Man-Army’ who could single-handedly take down an entire opposition. This man from Haryana was none other than Manjeet Chhillar.
Although Chhillar was a well-known figure within the kabaddi circles, his brilliance in the league made him a household name. His dazzling display in the first season of VIVO Pro Kabaddi saw him win the top defender of the league title. Not only did he perform well on a personal level, but his experience also meant that he was an able mentor to the youngsters in the side. His feared ankle hold would give raiders nightmares and his quick raids could surprise the best of defenders.
Over the years Chhillar has gone on to become one of the best all-rounders the game has ever seen. He has won a number of titles with the Indian team including the 2016 Kabaddi World Cup. His achievements at the international level have also seen him being honoured with the prestigious Arjuna Award. He was adjudged as the Most Valuable Player of VIVO Pro Kabaddi Season 2 and has the most overall tackle points in the league till date.
But Chhillar is not one to dwell over individual achievements. “It’s fine even if I don't get a single point. Put me on the bench, that’s fine. But the team must win,” Chhillar once said in an exclusive interview with Prokabaddi.com during Season 5.
“Because the player is never as important as the team. The team should win even if I am not playing. I don’t play for records.”
Of late, Chhillar has struggled with issues related to his fitness and has been in and out of both, the Indian as well as his VIVO Pro Kabaddi franchise, Jaipur Pink Panthers. He missed out on a few big events on the international level and his team Haryana even got knocked out of the Senior National Kabaddi Championship in the semifinals.
His performance for the Jaipur Pink Panthers was also below par and he managed just 52 points from the 15 games he played for them. He will be hoping to recover soon and get back to being the One-Man-Army he is known to be.