U Mumba had a disappointing start to their home leg after coming out on the wrong side of a 39-36 scoreline against Jaipur Pink Panthers at the Dome@NSCI SVP Stadium in Mumbai on Friday. Jasvir Singh top-scored for the Panthers with 10 touch points, while Pawan Kumar also notched up nine points. Their best performer in defence was Sunil Siddhgavali, who got a High 5 with six tackle points.
It was a slow start to the game with both sides managing only two points each in the opening five minutes of the half. The Panthers moved into the lead in the seventh minute after a superbly-timed dash that put U Mumba’s Anup Kumar on the bench.
Another successful tackle by Jaipur on U Mumba, followed by a two-point raid from Pawan gave the Panthers a 7-3 lead. The hosts responded with a super raid by Kuldeep Singh to close the gap before pulling off a successful tackle in a do-or-die raid soon after.
A stunning super raid by Jasvir in the 14th minute, which imposed an All-Out on U Mumba in the 14th minute, however, made it 13-8 in favour of the Panthers. He was at it again with another super raid four minutes from the end of the half to extend his side’s lead to 18-9. The half eventually ended with Jaipur inflicting a second All-Out of the match on Mumbai to take a 24-14 lead into the break.
The second period got underway with a successful raid by Anup. However, a two-point raid from Pawan and Siddhgavali’s fourth tackle point of the match took the wind out of U Mumba’s sails. Mumbai were on the receiving end of a third All-Out in the 28th minute courtesy of Jasvir, who continued to torment the home side’s defence.
With the game beyond U Mumba’s reach by this stage, the Panthers decided to play smart and see out the match. Mumbai did manage to chip away at Jaipur’s mammoth lead and even managed to inflict an All-Out on the Panthers to set up an exciting finish. However, in the end it wasn’t enough to prevent a victory for the Abhishek Bachchan-owned franchise, who didn’t have the services of skipper Manjeet Chhillar on the night due to injury.
Check out our snapshots from this match here.