A close contest between Tamil Thalaivas and Haryana Steelers ended in a 32-32 tie on Wednesday. In the post-match press conference, Tamil Thalaivas were represented by coach E Bhaskaran and captain Ajay Thakur while coach Rambir Singh Khokhar, Assistant Coach Surender Nada and Vikash Khandola took questions for Haryana Steelers.
Q1. The last time the two teams met, the result was also a tie. How do you see today’s game?
E Bhaskaran: Firstly, I want to congratulate my team because, in spite of the way the lead changed hands throughout the game, they managed to show great teamwork. I don’t mind that the game was a tie. The important thing is that they were in the game till the end which is something I am proud of. With many tough matches coming up, this result was very important for us. The teams from last season have changed completely so the previous result doesn’t have much bearing here. We could have won this match but we will try to better this result in the next game.
Q2. Where do you think the match turned?
Ajay Thakur: The match was under our control at one point but some hasty catches, like mine and Sukesh Hegde’s, made the difference. I think the two points we gave away at the end really took the game away from us.
Q3. What is your opinion of your team’s raiding department?
E Bhaskaran: We should have had a few more points while raiding but weren’t able to get them. The support was missing in the raiding department at times. Ajay Thakur got tackled a couple of times which put the pressure on the other raiders because if they took a risk they could have been tackled, leaving the team in a shaky situation. But we’re forming a good rhythm now.
Q4. The pace in second half seemed to have slowed down a little. Was this a conscious decision?
Ajay Thakur: The situation was such in the second half that we didn’t want to hurry the game along. They had a slender lead which we knew we could overcome at any point. That is why we decided to slow down the pace of our game a little.
Q1. The team didn’t have a very good start. What do you think went wrong there?
Rambir Singh Khokhar: We had employed three raiders but they managed a few good tackles early on. This affected the result in the end.
Q2. What do have to say about Vikash Khandola’s performance?
Rambir Singh Khokhar: Vikash’s performance is for all to see. He played some very good kabaddi and he is technically very sound. He is very good in both, fitness and skill since the last season. His performance will only improve from here.
Q3. Vikash, how do you see this game?
Vikash Khandola: In the raiding department we were doing all right but a couple of mistakes towards the end cost us the game and we had to settle for a tie.