Bengal Warriors and U.P. Yoddha played out a thrilling 40-40 tie in Match 25 at the Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex in Pune on Saturday. Bengal Warriors were represented at the post-match press conference by captain PO Surjeet Singh and coach Jagdish Kumble whereas U.P. Yoddha were represented by captain Rishank Devadiga and coach Jasveer Singh.
Q: Do you think if you had a different strategy for the last raid, you could have won instead of getting a tie?
Jagdish Kumble: Nothing like that. There was nothing wrong with our strategy. There was one raid where we got just a touch point and not a bonus. Had we taken that, we would have won the match.
Q: Do you think giving away too many bonus points cost you today?
Jagdish Kumble: Our main aim is to win the match. According to our strategy, we had to give bonus points but not risk a touch point. There’s a different strategy for each raider but we wanted to have the maximum number of defenders possible on the mat so that we could attack their raiders and get points.
Q: Maninder Singh got 16 raid points but also sat most of the first half out. Do you think this played a part in the end result of the game?
Jagdish Kumble: Absolutely. We were trailing at the end of the first half because Maninder sat out for most of it. Had he played most of the half, we would have been ahead. He’s our lead raider and him being on the mat makes a difference for the rest of the team.
Q: Dabang Delhi K.C., who you play next, have one of the most experienced defences this season. How does that affect the raiders?
Jagdish Kumble: They have a brilliant defence consisting of Joginder Narwal, Ravinder Pahal and Vishal Mane. Our raiders are no less though. We are one of the best raiding sides. Our strategy for the game and the team was different today and will be different for our next game. Dabang Delhi K.C. are a great team but we think our strategies will be enough to beat them.
Q: Your team played well throughout the game. Do you believe Bengal Warriors came back too strongly towards the end?
Rishank Devadiga: We performed pretty well in the first half. We were in the lead at the end of it. Our defence played according to our strategy. We had told them Bengal Warriors’ raiders are really strong and so is their defence. We did concede the advantage towards the end, but I was happy with the overall performance.
Q: Do you see this tie as a positive for your squad given the vastly experienced opposition team?
Jasveer Singh: We have Jeeva Kumar, and also have Rishank Devadiga, Prashanth Kumar Rai and Shrikant Jadhav who have played in VIVO Pro Kabaddi before. Our defence does have new faces but they are learning every game and performing better with each passing game. We could have won this game with the way they performed today.