A Super 10 from Rakesh and a High 5 from Girish Ernak helped the Gujarat Giants beat U Mumba 36-33. With this win, Gujarat cemented their place in the top six and qualified for the playoffs.
The Giants were in the ascendancy early and raced to a 5-1 lead, courtesy of a two-point raid from Ajay Kumar, a touch point from Rakesh and Mahendra Rajput and a tackle point from Girish. Rakesh’s second touch point left U Mumba with a solitary man on the mat, but Shivam managed to help his side keep the All Out at bay with a two-point raid.
However, it only proved to be a momentary respite, as Rakesh tagged both U Mumba players before stretching his hand and getting it past the midline to inflict an All Out to give his side a six-point lead.
A 7-3 run from U Mumba cut their deficit to two, but a couple of two-point raids from Rakesh saw the Giants reclaim their considerable advantage.
Another touch point for Gujarat left U Mumba with only V Ajith Kumar on the mat, but the raider managed to help his side avoid the All Out with a two-point raid. Rakesh completed his Super 10 in the final raid of the half to help the Giants go into the break leading by six.
A surrender raid from Ajith inflicted an All Out on U Mumba, and two further unanswered points from the Giants extended their lead to 11. Successive two-point raids from Ajith and Shivam cut the Giants lead to seven and reduced them to two players on the mat.
Ajith then managed to tag both remaining Gujarat players on the mat before diving past the midline to inflict an All Out and cut U Mumba’s deficit to just four points. The Giants responded to the setback with a 3-1 run to extend their lead to six, but U Mumba replied with a 3-1 run of their own to cut the deficit to four.
A self-out from Ajith saw the Giants reclaim their five-point cushion, and despite a 2-0 run in the final minute from U Mumba, Gujarat managed to hold on and secure their berth in the playoffs.
Best Raider – Rakesh (13 Raid Points)
Best Defender – Girish Ernak (5 Tackle Points)
Best Raider – V Ajith Kumar (11 Raid Points)
Best Defender – Fazel Atrachali (3 Tackle Points)