Bengaluru Bulls finished their home leg with a 40-39 win over Telugu Titans at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru on Friday. It was a jaw-dropping battle as both ‘Hi-Flyer’ Pawan Sehrawat and ‘Baahubali’ Siddharth Desai finished with 22 raid points each. In the end though Bengaluru Bulls did just about enough to secure a win and finish with three wins from four at home.
Both teams started positively and didn’t waste much time to get the scoreboard ticking. It was all square at 6-6 after the opening eight minutes with neither side managing to stamp their authority on the game. Sehrawat grew in influence as the half progressed but finished the opening period with six raid points, while Siddharth was Telugu Titans’ top-scorer with four raid points. Bengaluru Bulls ended the first half slightly on top having reduced Telugu Titans to two men on court to take a 15-12 advantage into the break.
Bengaluru Bulls enforced an All-Out on Telugu Titans following a two-point Sehrawat raid within a minute of the restart. Now with a 19-12 lead after the All-Out, the hosts looked to build on their advantage. However, some excellent defending and decisive raiding by Siddharth helped Telugu Titans reduce the deficit to three points at one stage.
A Super Raid by Sehrawat though changed the complexion of the contest and seemed to take the stuffing out of Telugu Titans. With confidence now flowing through his veins, Sehrawat went about his business intelligently against Telugu Titans’ defence and guided his team as the hosts inflicted another to extend their lead to 32-23.
Even though Bengaluru Bulls had extended their lead, Telugu Titans continued to fight with Siddharth picking up some quick raid points to narrow the deficit. Siddharth then shocked and silenced the home crowd with a four-point Super Raid that enforced an All-Out on Bengaluru Bulls and reduced the hosts’ lead to 35-33.
Another Super Raid by Siddharth with a little over one minute to play then tied the score at 36-36. Sehrawat and Siddharth scored two more points each for their teams to make it 38-38 and anyone’s game going into the final minute. With the match on a knife’s edge, Sehrawat produced a two-point raid in the penultimate raid of the match and Bengaluru Bulls were then happy to concede a point on the buzzer raid to secure a hard-fought win.
Bengaluru Bulls –
Best Raider – Pawan Sehrawat (22 Raid Points)
Best Defender – Mahender Singh (3 Tackle Points)
Telugu Titans –
Best Raider – Siddharth Desai (22 Raid Points)
Best Defender – Abozar Mighani (4 Tackle Points)