A thriller between the Haryana Steelers and U.P. Yoddha finished in a 36-36 tie. Steelers’ Vikash Kandola and U.P. Yoddha’s Surender Gill’s duel in the final ten minutes turned the game into a high-scoring, back-and-forth affair. The Haryana raider finished the game with 17 points, while Surender managed 14.
The Steelers raced to a 4-1 lead, courtesy of a strong start from their defence that scored three tackle points in the opening few minutes. But the Pirates quickly responded with three unanswered points to level the scores.
Pardeep was proving too hot to handle for the Steelers’ defence as the mercurial picked up five of U.P. Yoddha’s seven points to give them a two-point lead. He added another touch point to his tally to leave the Steelers with just a solitary man on the mat. U.P. Yoddha’s defence allowed the raider to pick the bonus before pinning him down to inflict the game’s first All Out and take an 11-7 lead.
Both teams added three points to their total over the next few minutes as U.P. Yoddha maintained their four-point lead. The Steelers finished the half stronger, scoring three unanswered points to go into the half trailing by a point.
U.P. Yoddha were in the ascendancy early in the second half and pushed their lead up to three points and left the Steelers with just three on the mat. Surender Nada turned the situation into an advantage for his team with a stellar Super Tackle on Pardeep, which cut his team’s deficit to one.
Nada’s brilliance only provided a momentary respite as Surender Gill’s Super Raid helped U.P. Yoddha regain their three-point lead and left the Steelers with just two men on the mat. The young raider picked up another touch point, and U.P. Yoddha’s defence took care of the final player in the subsequent raid to inflict another All Out on the Steelers and take a six-point lead.
With momentum on their side, U.P. Yoddha continued their onslaught and added three more unanswered points to their total post the All Out to take a nine-point lead. The Steelers responded with a 5-1 run that cut their deficit to six. Vikash Kandola then went in to raid against a defence of three, tagged them all before making his way past the midline for a five-point Super Raid that helped Haryana claw their way to within of U.P. Yoddha’s points table.
Kandola then added another couple of points to his team’s total with a two-point raid that gave the Steelers the lead. Gill responded with a two-point raid to reclaim U.P. Yoddha’s slender advantage, but Kandola levelled the score with another touch point.
The Gill vs Kandola battle seemed to have reached its conclusion, as the U.P. Yoddha raider picked up another couple of points to give his side. But in his team’s final raid of the game, Kandola levelled the score with a two-point raid of his own and earned three valuable points for his side.
Best Raider – Vikash Kandola (17 Raid Points)
Best Defender – Surender Nada (5 Tackle Points)
Best Raider – Surender Gill (13 Raid Points)
Best Defender – Nitesh Kumar (3 Tackle Points)