Patna Pirates’ home leg got underway at the Harivansh Tana Bhagat Indoor Stadium in Ranchi on Friday as the hosts registered a 46-30 win over Telugu Titans and Gujarat Fortunegiants went top of Zone A with a victory against U Mumba.

The Pirates made a winning start to their home leg in dominant fashion with Pardeep Narwal top-scoring with 14 points, while Monu Goyat notched up 10 points on the night. However, speaking to the media at the post-match press conference, Patna coach Ram Mehar Singh was all praise for the defence. “We had played two matches against Telugu Titans and won those matches. So that was a plus for us. Secondly the errors which the defence was making recently… we practised to rectify those mistakes. The defence performed really well today,” Singh said. 

He added: “Our senior defenders like Vishal Mane, Jaideep [played well] and we gave a chance to a new defender today Jawahar Dagar. He also played well. It looks like the problem with the defence has been sorted and if the defence plays well, then the team definitely wins the match. We have lost the earlier matches only because of errors which the defence made. So, we will try to ensure our defenders keep it up in the upcoming matches.”

When asked about the turning point of the match, Singh said: “Pardeep [Narwal] got three points, then Monu [Goyat] also got two points for us. The mistake which we made was that Vinod attempted an advance tackle, and from there they [Telugu Titans] got the momentum. The important thing we did was that we controlled their main raiders and because of that the match came back to us and it was a one-sided match in the end.”