Dabang Delhi K.C. were led by Naveen Kumar’s record ninth-straight Super 10 as they claimed a 38-35 victory over Patna Pirates on Friday to finish with a 100%-win record in their vivo Pro Kabaddi Season 7 home leg at the Thyagaraj Sports Complex. At the post-match press conference, Naveen Kumar, coach Krishan Kumar Hooda and captain Joginder Narwal took questions for the home side, while Patna Pirates were represented by coach Ram Mehar Singh and ‘Record-Breaker’ Pardeep Narwal.
Dabang Delhi K.C.
Q. Joginder, how happy are you with this result?
Joginder Narwal: I am very happy that the team won all our games at home. This is our tribute to our fans from Delhi and everyone who supports us. It is a matter of great joy for us. I hope the team continues to play well and keeps winning more matches. We will keep practising hard and stick to the plans our coach has made against the teams we are playing next.
Q. Coach, what do you think of this match and the team’s home leg overall?
Krishan Kumar Hooda: I would like to congratulate the team first and foremost for achieving what no other team has been able to achieve in their home leg so far. I especially want to mention the contributions of our captain Joginder Narwal, our senior defender Ravinder Pahal and our two main raiders Naveen Kumar and Chandran Ranjit. The entire team is worthy of praise. Every member of our team has worked hard to be here. I also want to congratulate Naveen for becoming the top raider of this season. I don’t think there could be a happier occasion for me.
Q. Thoughts on Naveen’s record-breaking performance this season?
Krishan Kumar Hooda: Records are made to be broken. I am happy, though, that one of our players has broken the record. I had said this in many interviews earlier that our raiders - Naveen and Ranjit- are top raiders. I consider both to be the team’s main raiders and they have the potential to be among the top three raiders in the season. Today is Naveen’s day so I want to congratulate him. The way this young man is playing and seeing the gameplay he has displayed; I can say that he has the potential to be among the top raiders in the world.
Q. Coach, thoughts on the match?
Ram Mehar Singh: The match came close towards the end, but the raiding was lacking in the beginning and the defence was not set either. Even then, we recovered well. The game was so close only because we started working well together after a point. But we had chances earlier in the match as well which we did not capitalise on. One of our biggest mistakes was when Pardeep Narwal went in to raid with a minute left and came back empty-handed. That was a point where we had to score. Other than that, the team performed well considering how good a team Dabang Delhi K.C. is.
Q. What will you look to change going forward?
Ram Mehar Singh: I hope that the defence performs well going forward and the second and third raider can support Pardeep well. Once the other raiders and the defence can support the main raider, you can see the difference in the way our team performs.