U.P. Yoddha and Telugu Titans’ first clash of VIVO Pro Kabaddi Season 7 ended in a 20-20 tie at the Dome, NSCI, SVP Stadium in Mumbai on Friday. It was the first tie of the season and the match went to the buzzer raid, which ended in both sides being awarded technical points. After the match, U.P. Yoddha coach Jasveer Singh spoke to reporters at the post-match press conference, while assistant coach Jagdish Kumble and Siddharth ‘Baahubali’ Desai answered questions from the Telugu Titans camp.
Q. Siddharth, a much better performance from you today. Your thoughts.
Siddharth Desai: I worked on my mistakes and practised really hard after our first few games and I think that helped me produce a better performance today.
Q. Coach Jagdish, a word on your defence’s performance today.
Jagdish Kumble: Yes, I am very pleased with our defence. We have many experienced players and our plan was to play defensively most of the time because they have good raiders. Siddharth also found some form today and grew in confidence, but yes, our defence worked very well today.
Q. Why do you think defenders are outperforming raiders this season?
Jagdish Kumble: This season everyone’s defence has performed very well so far. The new generation of players virtually start playing on the mat so that helps these youngsters who are just entering the league. Add to that the fact that all teams now analyze all the weakness and strengths of opponents and you can understand why it’s been more difficult to raid this year.
Q. Your thoughts on the game?
Jasveer Singh: It was a very close game; they are a very good team as well plus Siddharth Desai was also in form and played well. We decided to tackle him on the third (Do-or-Die) raid and there were slight miscalculations and it led to a tie.
Q. What happened in the closing stages of the game?
Jasveer Singh: The last 4-5 minutes were like a whirlwind. A lot of things happened, and we ended up conceding a technical point but what we had to do was catch the raider in the third raid. Unfortunately, we couldn’t catch him and made a mistake by conceding a technical point, which resulted in a tie.
Q. Defence dominated the second half, your thoughts on that?
Jasveer Singh: Both defences were dominating in the second half. Our raiders tried their best to get points at the start but ended up getting tackled. So, then we decided to play more defensively because we had to stop their main raider, Siddharth Desai. We played defensively and both sides continued to get points equally.