A strong comeback in the second half from Gujarat Fortunegiants went in vain as Dabang Delhi K.C. beat the two-time finalists by a scoreline of 34-30 at the Shree Shiv, Chhatrapati Sports Complex, Mahalunge, Balewadi in Pune on Sunday.

Dabang Delhi K.C’s Naveen Kumar scored his 13th consecutive Super 10.

The league-leaders were off to a fine start and raced to a 4-1 lead courtesy of a raid point each from Vijay and Naveen Kumar and a couple of tackle points from Ravinder Pahal. However, a technical Super Tackle and a tackle point from Ruturaj Koravi levelled the scores at 4-all. Tackles from Vishal Mane and Joginder Narwal reduced Gujarat Fortunegiants back down to three on the mat and Naveen took care of all three in a five-point Super Raid to inflict an All-Out and give Dabang Delhi K.C. a seven-point lead.

The game was evenly contested over for the next few minutes, with both teams adding three points each to the scoreboard, before Naveen’s tackle started another good spell for the table-toppers with a tackle on Rohit Gulia. Chandran Ranjit’s touch point on Parvesh Bhainswal reduced Gujarat Fortunegiants down to three and in the final raid of the half, Naveen scored two more touch points to extend his team’s lead to 11.

Vishal Mane was the most successful defender of the match with three tackle points.

In the very first raid of the second half, Dabang Delhi K.C. inflicted a second All-Out to take a 23-9 lead in the contest. The next seven minutes belonged to Gujarat Fortunegiants as they enjoyed their strongest spell of the match. It started with Gulia’s two-point raid followed by Pankaj’s tackle on Naveen which cut the deficit to 11. Sachin’s touch point followed by a self-out for Ranjit reduced Dabang Delhi K.C. to just two men on the mat. Gulia made short work of the two defenders on the mat, getting a touch on both and inflicted an All-Out. Gulia and Pankaj added two more points to their team’s total as Gujarat Fortunegiants cut Dabang Delhi K.C.’s lead to two.

With under four minutes left on the clock, the difference between the two sides remained at two, however, Naveen’s 10th raid point of the night and Joginder Narwal’s successful tackle gave them a four-point cushion. A self-out by Gulia and a strong dash on Sachin by Vishal Mane in the final minute extended Dabang Delhi K.C.’s lead to six. Gujarat Fortunegiants finished the contest with two successive points, but it meant little as Dabang Delhi K.C. ran victors by four points.

Top Performers:

Dabang Delhi K.C.

Best Raider – Naveen Kumar (11 Raid Points)

Best Defender – Vishal Mane (3 Tackle Points)

Gujarat Fortunegiants

Best Raider – Rohit Gulia (13 Raid Points)

Best Defender – Pankaj (2 Tackle Points)