Gujarat Fortunegiants have tasted a lot of success in VIVO Pro Kabaddi since their debut last season. After a campaign that saw them finish runners-up to Patna Pirates in Season 5, Gujarat Fortunegiants have once again qualified for the Playoffs at the top of their zone this season on the back of some stunning performances.
Coach Manpreet Singh, who has been one of the architects of the team’s success since their debut, says that he hasn’t put any pressure on his team as they enter the next stage of the competition; a strategy, he feels, which has worked well for them over the past.
“Kabaddi is a fun game. I just tell my players to keep on playing as they have been,” said Singh. “Winning and losing is part and parcel of the game.”
A strong believer in players sticking to their strengths in match situations, Singh was certain that the team had the potential to go all the way to the finals once again if they stuck to the basics as they have been so far.
“One should play according to their skill,” reasoned Singh. “The defender should only tackle when the raider attacks. They shouldn’t try and go in for an advanced tackle as long as the raider isn’t looking for a point. The same applies to the raiders. They shouldn’t forcefully go in for a point which isn’t there unless it’s a Do-or-Die raid. If we manage this then we should be able to do well going forward as well.”
Sunil Kumar, who is leading a team in VIVO Pro Kabaddi for the first time, has been one of Gujarat Fortunegiants’ standout performers throughout the season. However, the team has also managed to rotate the squad well and find different key performers in almost every match. This gives the team options, but also, according to Kumar, puts them in a situation where deciding the lineup plays a vital role even before the team takes the mat.
“For us, the team’s composition and our combination are key,” said Kumar.
“The performance of each and every player is vital for us. Only if we are able to perform well as a team will we go ahead in the league.”
This attitude of putting the team first has been one of the secrets of Gujarat Fortunegiants’ success, felt Kumar and that was something he firmly believed that the team should continue to follow.
“In the end, we have to play for Gujarat Fortunegiants and not for ourselves,” he concluded.