A thriller of a contest on Saturday at The Arena by TransStadia saw Gujarat Fortunegiants and Bengaluru Bulls share the spoils after the match ended 30-30. Raider Sachin led the way for Gujarat Fortunegiants with a Super 10 while Rohit Kumar and Pawan Kumar Sehrawat combined to score 16 points for the visitors.
Bengaluru Bulls set the pace early in the contest courtesy of their raiding trio of Rohit Kumar, Pawan Sehrawat and Kashiling Adake contributing in offence as well as defence to give their side a 4-2 lead. But some good work from Dong Geon Lee and Sachin helped Gujarat Fortunegiants level the match at 5-5. Lee and Sachin then continued their good work and got two more touch points, split by a mammoth tackle by Ruturaj Koravi on Adake, and reduced the Bengaluru Bulls to just three men on the mat.
Check out the photos from the match here.
But then came the game-changing moment of the first half as captain Rohit Kumar, facing a Do-Or-Die raid, managed to get rid of both Gujarat Fortunegiants Cover defenders- Sunil Kumar and Parvesh Bhainswal, and reduced the deficit to just a solitary point while reviving two men for Bengaluru Bulls. The team made good of Rohit Kumar’s lead, as Adake and Sehrawat got a touch point each and the defence managed to bring down Sachin and Ajay Kumar to leave Gujarat Fortunegiants with just two men on the mat.
Sehrawat made short work of the two men, getting them both in the same raid to inflict the game’s first All-Out and give his side a 16-10 lead. Gujarat Fortunegiants responded with two quick raid points from Sachin and K Prapanjan but Sehrawat’s touch on Koravi and Sandeep’s brilliant tackle on Prapanjan ensured the momentum stayed in Bengaluru Bulls’ favour as they went into halftime leading 18-12.
Gujarat Fortunegiants scored five straight points in the second half to reduce Bengaluru Bulls down to just two men. Sandeep managed to get a Super Tackle on Prapanjan to cease Gujarat Fortunegiants’ run, but the home side weren’t to be denied as Sachin helped the team inflict an All-Out on Bengaluru Bulls and take the lead in the match.
With the score at 25-23 in the home side’s favour, Bengaluru Bulls needed someone to step up and Sehwarat answered his team’s call, getting a two-point raid to even the scores. After a back-and-forth battle for the next couple of minutes, Rohit Kumar went in to raid in the 39th minute in a Do-Or-Die situation and executed a brilliant Frog Jump over the onrushing Sunil Kumar to get a touch point and give his side a 29-28 lead. Substitute Rohit Gulia quickly pinched a bonus point to level the tie.
Visit the matchcentre to relive the contest here.
With the Super Tackle on, Rohit Kumar decided to play it smart and put in an empty raid to put the onus on the home side to try and pick up a point that would win them the game. Tensions were soaring in that final raid and Gulia managed to get a bonus point. But before he could escape, he was ushered off court by Sehrawat to give both sides a point, ending the match in a tie.
Gujarat Fortunegiants -
Best Raider – Sachin (10 Raid Points)
Best Defender – Sunil Kumar (4 Tackle Points)
Bengaluru Bulls -
Best Raider – Pawan Kumar Sehrawat (8 Raid Points)
Best Defender: Sandeep (4 Tackle Points)