Ahmedabad: India bounced back in style as they crushed Australia 54-20 to record their first win of the 2016 Kabaddi World Cup. After losing to South Korea in their opening match on Friday, India needed to make a statement and they did it in an emphatic manner and rise to the top of Group A.
It was a superb all-round team effort and all Indian players pitched in the comprehensive victory. India benched Rahul Chaudhari and Jasvir Singh and started with Pardeep Narwal and Sandeep Narwal in their place. Indian substitutes played a key role in the victory as the bench contributed 20 points. Ajay Thakur was top scorer for India and scored seven points – all scored after coming on as a substitute.
Indian defence began strongly as they sent two Australian players on the bench and raced into a 3-0 lead after two minutes. Pardeep Narwal scored with his first raid in fourth minute as India led 6-0. An all out was inflicted by India in the fifth minute as the hosts took a commanding 10-0 lead. Australia scored their first point when Campbell Brown got a bonus in the sixth minute. Deepak Niwas Hooda scored with a raid as India led 13-1 after seven minutes.
India came out all guns blazing as they inflicted another all out in the 11th minute to lead 20-2. Such was India’s dominance that all Australia could score were bonus points in the first half. Pardeep Narwal scored five raid points while Manjeet Chhillar got a high five for India. Kuldeep Singh scored three points for Australia in the first half. India were well on top at the end of first half and led 32-7 at the break.
The second half began with India inflicting an all out in the 21st minute to lead 35-7. Thomas Sharp scored first touch point of the match for Australia in the 22nd minute. Australia were still looking for their first tackle point as India led 38-9 after 26 minutes. Rahul Chaudhari came on in the 29th minute and immediately scored with his raid as India led 41-12 after 30 minutes. Australia defence had a nightmare and failed to score a single point throughout the match.
India showed their bench strength as Ajay Thakur scored seven raid points after coming on as a substitute. Rahul Chaudhari scored two points with a raid in the 34th minute as India took an unassailable 45-14 lead. A fourth all out was inflicted by India in the 36th minute to lead 49-15. Australian captain Campbell Brown scored five points for Australia. Kuldeep Singh scored Australia’s first super raid in the dying seconds of the match but India had far too much in their locker and won 54-20. After a stutter against Republic of Korea in the opening match, India got their 2016 Kabaddi World Cup campaign back on track.
Earlier in the day, Bangladesh produced a strong display to hammer newcomers England 50-18. The English defense was all over the place allowing the Bangladesh raiders to build a healthy lead by picking up bonus points. As the pressure grew on the Englishmen, Bangladesh stepped up their performance to completely dismantle England.
In the second game of the day, Poland and Kenya produced a 100-point thiller that was won by Kenya by a margin of 54-48. Kenyan skipper David Mosambayi was the star of the show as he scored super 10 to guide his team to a crucial win.
India will next play Bangladesh on Tuesday whereas Australia will lock horns with England on Monday.
With inputs from Star Sports Release