Dabang Delhi K.C. beat U Mumba 33-32 at the Dome@NSCI SVP Stadium in Mumbai on Sunday to avenge their defeat earlier in the season. Skipper Meraj Sheykh led his team to victory with a total of 11 raid points, including a Super 10. Captain Cool Anup Kumar also managed 11 points but couldn’t prevent a third consecutive loss at home for Mumbai.
It was a high intensity start by U Mumba, who raced into a 5-1 lead three minutes into the match. Delhi gradually grew into the game with their Iranian stars Abolfazl Maghsodlou and Sheykh looking lively and busy on the mat.
Bajirao Hodage was another who shone in defence for Delhi and in tandem with Sheykh, who pulled off a two-point raid in the 16th minute, managed to orchestrate an All-Out on Mumbai moments later as they took a 14-11 lead.
Shrikant Jadhav, who was Mumbai’s best player of the opening period, then executed a swift raid for his team shortly before half-time. His quick raid was followed up by Anup’s two-point buzzer raid which made it 17-17 at the break.
Like the opening period, Mumbai got off on the right foot in the second half but they kept struggling against Maghsodlou, who was picking up raid points in effortless fashion. Delhi had a slight advantage heading into the final 10 minutes of the contest with the score 22-20 in their favour.
They extended their lead to 27-22 thanks to a confident Sheykh, who seemed to be going about his business seamlessly, pulling off back-to-back successful raids to eventually set up a second All-Out of the match on U Mumba in the 32nd minute.
Mumbai cut the lead down to three points in the 36th minute courtesy of a two-point raid by Kashiling Adake. Sheykh, however, responded with a successful do-or-die raid in the next piece of action to bring up his Super 10.
The Delhi skipper along with his countryman Maghsodlou continued to raid successfully as the match began to slip away from Mumbai. A two-point raid by Anup in the penultimate minute of the encounter made it a two-point game but Delhi’s defence held their nerve and kept their composure to see out the match and condemn U Mumba to their fourth successive defeat.
Check out our snapshots from this match here.