Sensational performances from Arjun Deshwal and Sandeep Dhull helped the Jaipur Pink Panthers trounce Patna Pirates 51-30. The mercurial raider was the game’s top scorer with 17 points, while Dhull managed a High 5. With this win, Jaipur swept their season series against Patna and cut the gap to the top six to a solitary point.
The Pink Panthers were off to a sensational start, as Deshwal and the defence combined to help their side race to a 5-0 lead. Sachin and Monu Goyat helped the Pirates get on the scoreboard, but the Pink Panthers continued to add to their total and reduced Patna to just two players on the mat. Deshwal then went in to raid and was seemingly Super Tackled by the Pirates’ defence. But the raider wrestled himself free and wiggled his hand past the midline to inflict the game’s first All Out and give Jaipur a 12-3 lead.
Monu picked the first point post the reset, but it was all Pink Panthers from that point on. Deshwal, Deepak Hooda and the defence helped their side embark on a 6-0 run that pushed the Pink Panthers’ lead up to 14 points. Deshwal’s touch point on Neeraj Kumar reduced the Pirates to a solitary man on the mat, but substitute Guman Singh’s two-point raid managed to keep the All Out at bay.
Jaipur, though, were in no mood to relent, as another touch point followed by a successful tackle on Monu Goyat inflicted an All Out on the Pirates and saw the Pink Panthers take a 23-8 lead. The Pirates finished the half on a 3-2 run to go into the break trailing by 14 points.
Multi-point raids from Deshwal and Hooda early in the second half pegged the Pirates on the backfoot. But two Super Tackles from the Pirates’ defence, either side of a two-point raid from Sachin, saw the Pirates score six unanswered points and cut the deficit to 13 points.
The Pink Panthers responded to this surge with two unanswered points that left the Pirates with just two men on the mat. Deshwal then managed to tag both defenders en route to the midline to help Jaipur inflict a third All Out and take a 36-17 lead.
Post the reset, Dhull picked up two quick tackle points to complete his High 5, while Deshwal continued to add to his tally as the Pink Panthers’ lead ballooned to 21 points. With the game out of grasp, the Pirates planned to deploy a pragmatic approach to protect their score difference. But the Pink Panthers continued to add to their tally till the final whistle, forcing the Pirates to respond.
The final few minutes were evenly contested, with Jaipur narrowly out-scoring Patna and winning the game by 21 points.
Jaipur Pink Panthers
Best Raider – Arjun Deshwal (17 Raid Points)
Best Defender – Sandeep Dhull (5 Tackle Points)
Best Raider - Guman Singh (11 Raid Points)
Best Defender - Sunil (3 Tackle Points)