Defending champions Patna Pirates picked up their first victory in four matches with a 35-24 win over Tamil Thalaivas at the Dome@NSCI SVP Stadium on Saturday. The Pirates were in action for a second consecutive day in Mumbai and bounced back with a comfortable win over Chennai after squandering a huge lead and drawing with Bengal Warriors in the final minutes of their first encounter in the Maximum City on Friday.
Speaking to the media at the post-match press conference, Patna coach Ram Mehar Singh was pleased as punch. “I think we played similar to what we played yesterday [against Bengal] till the 30th minute of the game. What we planned was that we will not give them bonus points. So, I think the defence started executing that plan in the last 10 minutes. I also think the defence didn’t make the mistakes they made yesterday. So, I am happy about their performance,” he said.
Meanwhile, the second match of the evening witnessed Puneri Paltan condemn U Mumba to their second loss in as many days at home. The 26-24 win over Mumbai was Pune’s second triumph against their Maharashtra rivals this season, with Pune skipper Deepak Hooda scoring a game-high eight points. Coach BC Ramesh was effusive in his praise of his team after the match.
“I think we have good raiders as well as defenders. Deepak [Hooda] and Sandeep [Narwal] can raid as well as defend. They [U Mumba] had the lead but our players performed well and they showed real team work. We tried for bonus points as well. Deepak also got the bonus point in the last moments and Sandeep also tackled Anup Kumar at a crucial point,” Ramesh said.