Thrilling contests, record-breaking feats and spectacular action were just a few of the elements on display at the Thyagaraj Sports Complex in the recently concluded Delhi leg. Unlike the rest of the home teams in vivo Pro Kabaddi Season 7, Dabang Delhi K.C. enjoyed a fruitful spell at home and finished the leg on the league summit. With that in mind, here are five takeaways from the Delhi leg.
1. Naveen Kumar conquers the ‘Record-Breaker’
Naveen Kumar registered an unprecedented ninth successive Super 10 in the last game of the Delhi leg against Patna Pirates to break ‘Record-Breaker’ Pardeep Narwal’s record. Naveen has been in scintillating form this season and finished Dabang Delhi K.C.’s home leg as the leading raid points scorer in the league (130). His ninth consecutive Super 10 against Patna Pirates saw him better Pardeep’s record of eight, while also ensuring Dabang Delhi K.C. extended their lead at the top of the table to 10 points.
2. Another feather on the Iceman’s hat
Despite not enjoying the best of fortunes with Tamil Thalaivas on the mat, keeping ‘Iceman’ Ajay Thakur away from the limelight is neigh impossible. His game-high 11 raid points in the loss to Bengal Warriors may have gone in vain in terms of the result but it made him just the fourth player in the history of vivo Pro Kabaddi to cross the 800 points mark. That, of course, was merely the icing on the cake on a personal front having received the Arjuna Award for his contribution to kabaddi earlier in the day.
3. Dabang Delhi K.C.’s perfect home finish
One of the most peculiar themes in the ongoing season was the form of hosts during their home leg. Prior to the Delhi leg, U Mumba’s two wins from four matches was the best home record in Season 7. Dabang Delhi K.C. though bucked that trend and did so in prolific fashion by registering four wins from as many games. By doing so, they finished with a perfect home record, which is a feat that had never been achieved since the league switched to 12 teams. The closest any side had managed to a perfect home record with 12 teams in the league was when Gujarat Fortunegiants won four games and tied the other at home in Season 5. However, Dabang Delhi K.C.’s perfect record is the first of its kind in a 12-team league.
4. Haryana Steelers’ strong showings in Delhi
Like the home side, Haryana Steelers and Vikash Kandola also enjoyed a fruitful Delhi leg. Currently in fourth spot, Haryana Steelers have been in good form of late and continued their purple patch with back-to-back wins to make it six victories in their last seven games. Kandola has played an influential role in their success by contributing raid points consistently and he played his role of talisman to a tee for Haryana Steelers in Delhi as well with match-winning performances, including a Super 10 effort in the game against Bengal Warriors.
5. Telugu Titans put on a Super Tackles exhibition
Even though the result didn’t go their way, Telugu Titans and Pro Kabaddi fans will remember their match against Puneri Paltan in the penultimate clash of the Delhi leg in Season 7. Puneri Paltan may have got the win, but Telugu Titans’ seven Super Tackles in the game – a league record – is likely to be remembered for some time to come. They executed five Super Tackles in the first half and two in the second to leave the fans in bewilderment and the opposition in search of answers.