Highlights, Kabaddi Masters Dubai 2018, India vs Pakistan, Match 1 at Dubai: Ajay Thakur and Co win by 16-point margin

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Highlights, Kabaddi Masters Dubai 2018, India vs Pakistan, Match 1 at Dubai: Ajay Thakur and Co win by 16-point margin
  • 21:27 (IST)

    India has got off to a near-perfect start in the Kabaddi Masters Dubai 2018. Though Ajay Thakur and Co started cautiously, the Indian team upped the ante ten minutes into the game and from there it was a complete India show.

    Pakistan raiders were all over the place and failed to create any sort of impact in the match. However, Pakistan can be proud of their defence as they managed to pull off one super tackle after another. 

    India have little to complain except for the form of Rahul Chaudhari who failed to make the most of the opportunity in a highly competitive squad. He needs to pick himself up immediately and considering the calibre of the raider, it might not be that difficult a task for the PKL Superstar. 

    Once again, it was Ajay Thakur who led from the front with a brilliant all-round display to ensure India lived up to the billing of being tournament favourites. 

    That's it from us here. Join us again on Saturday as India continue their campaign with the clash against Kenya at 8 pm IST 

  • IND 36-20 PAK

    Comfortable win for India. Once again Ajay Thakur leads from the front. Few moments of concerns, but their strength in depth makes all the difference. Reddy replaces his underperforming troops with players on the bench and they worked

    India now play Kenya on Saturday 

  • 21:07 (IST)

    IND 34-19 PAK

    Rahul Chaudhari's miserable day continues as he succumbs to a super tackle from the Pakistan defenders. 

  • India have slowed it down. They are taking time in their raids without risking a lot. Onus on Pakistan’s raiders to pick up the points. It is not their strength and it is playing in India’s hands

  • 21:03 (IST)

    IND 34-17 PAK

    A super tackle there by Pakistan to knock Rohit Kumar off his feet, but India return the favour immediately with Ajay Thakur picking up his 2nd tackle point of the match

  • 21:00 (IST)

    IND 32-15 PAK

    Ajay Thakur has been brilliant today and has rallied his resources in an expert fashion. Watching the Indian captain in action has been a wonderful sight. 

  • IND 28-13 PAK

    India show their might again. Sandeep Narwal is sent on as India are short on numbers. He produces a brilliant tackle moments after a successful Ajay Thakur raid and India have recovered after the wobble

  • 20:45 (IST)

    IND 25-9 PAK

    ALL OUT! Pakistan are cleaned up again, just after play resumes. At 25-9, this game may well be beyond Pakistan now

  • Srinivas Reddy briefing the team at half time

  • 20:36 (IST)

    IND 22-9 PAK

    It has been a clinical performance by India in the first half of that opening game. After a rather sedate start in the first ten minutes, the Indian team switched gears to completely destabilise the Pakistan team to take a 13-point lead at half-time

  • IND 14-8 PAK

    Pardeep Narwal wasn’t having the best of time. Another player who struggles in an Indian shirt. Rohit Kumar comes on. No respite for Pakistan 

    Six-point lead for the Indian team after Rohit Kumar effects an all-out on the Pakistan side. WIih just three minutes left on the clock, it has been India's half so far!

  • 20:24 (IST)

    IND 9-7 PAK

    A successful review by Pakistan to overturn the All-out signal by the referee. With that decision, Pakistan also win bonus points for the Super Tackle 

  • IND 6-4 PAK

    Ajay Thakur has been leading from the front but the Pakistan defence has kept the other raiders, especially Pardeep Narwal, very quiet. 

    Pakistan’s strength is their defence. It is important for them to take the game to the do-or-die raids. For that Pakistan must stop gifting easy points to India as they did to Ajay Thakur. A good review to take Rahul Chaudhari’s bonus away but their defence needs to be more solid. Pakistan’s raiders don’t look very confident on their raids and all the pressure is on their defence 

  • 20:12 (IST)

    IND 2-2 PAK

    It is the ankle hold. The Surender Nada ankle hold. India win their first defence point. Pakistan strike back immediately as they hold Pardeep Narwal in their side of the court. 

  • 20:07 (IST)

    IND 1-0 PAK

    Pakistan begin with an empty raid. But Ajay Thakur wastes no time to put India on the scoreboard as the captain picks up a hand touch 

  • Toss means little in Kabaddi. But Ajay Thakur wins it and chooses court. That is enough for the crowd to go berserk. Having chosen court, India will raid first in the second half

  • Both the teams are out and are ready to kick-start the tournament.  Huge roar from the crowd as India jogged out. Time for the action to begin 

  • 19:51 (IST)

    Watch Firstpost correspondent Kaushal Shukla preview the opening match of the Kabaddi Masters Dubai between India and Pakistan from outside the Al Wasl Sports Club, Dubai. 

  • 19:40 (IST)

    It is no doubt that the Indian team start as firm favourites, here's a look at the team profile 

  • 19:35 (IST)

    India's starting line-up: Ajay Thakur, Surender Nada, Surjeet, Deepak Hooda, Pardeep Narwal, Mohit Chhillar, Rahul Chaudhari

    Pakistan's starting line-up: Kashif Razzaq, Mudassar Ali, Muhammad Nadeem, Muhammad Imran, Nasir Ali, Wasim Sajjad, Ibrar Hussain 

  • Srinivas Reddy has had to make some tough choices. It was always going to be the case with such talent at his disposal. But Monu Goyat, the most expensive Kabaddi player ever is on the bench, so is Rishank Devadiga and Manjeet Chhillar.

    Reddy has gone with the ever-reliable Deepak Niwas Hooda and he will have to fill in at Left cover. Surender Nada and Mohit Chhillar renew their partnership in defence and the consistent Surjeet also finds a place at Right cover. Ajay Thakur and Pardeep Narwal pick themselves but Rahul Chaudhari gets the nod as the team’s third raider. His record is undoubtable but his performances in an Indian shirt have left a lot to be desired.

    For Pakistan, both Nasir Ali and Wasim Sajjad start as expected 

  • Indian fans have thronged the stadium and are cheering for Ajay Thakur and Co

  • The crowd is in nice and early. This stand has been packed almost 90 minutes before the start of the game. Lot of Indian and Pakistani population in Dubai, and there seems to be great enthusiasm among them for this competition. 

    Plenty of Pakistan fans in this stand who made their way into the stadium with chants of ‘Pakistan Pakistan’

    I am told we are going to have a full house today. 2500 is anyway not a big number for Indians and Pakistanis to fill anywhere in the world

    India is well supported too. The crowd breaks into a huge roar as India captain Ajay Thakur and Pakistan skipper Nasir Ali walk out for pre-match interviews

  • 19:11 (IST)

    India and Pakistan have a long-standing rivalry in Kabaddi. Here's a look at other instances when both teams locked horns with each other. 

  • 18:40 (IST)

    Hello and welcome to Firstpost's  coverage of the Kabaddi Masters Dubai 2018 that starts on Friday with the match between India and Pakistan 

Preview: Giants India will start firm favourites when they lock horns with arch-rivals Pakistan in the opening game of the inaugural six-nation 'Kabaddi Masters Dubai 2018'.

The tournament will provide an excellent opportunity for Asian countries India, Pakistan, Iran and Korea to get battle-ready for the Asian Games in Jakarta and Palembang, starting 18 August.

India are the defending champions and have won gold in every edition of the tournament since the sport was inducted in the main roster in the 1990 Asiad.

 Highlights, Kabaddi Masters Dubai 2018, India vs Pakistan, Match 1 at Dubai: Ajay Thakur and Co win by 16-point margin

Rishank Devadiga, Ajay Thakur, Monu Goyat and Rahul Chaudhari. Agencies

"Asian Games will once again have Iran, Pakistan, and Korea among other teams and this tournament will be like a semi-final. It will be a good opportunity for preparation," India coach Srinivas Reddy said.

India are clubbed with Pakistan and newcomers Kenya in group A, while group B features Iran, Republic of Korea and Argentina with top two teams making the semi-finals.

'Flying raider' Ajay Thakur will lead India's challenge after returning at the helm at the expense of longstanding captain Anup Kumar.

Under Thakur, India beat Pakistan in successive matches en route to clinch the Asian Championship in Iran a year ago.

Besides Thakur, the Indian team also has quality raiders in Rahul Chaudhari, Pardeep Narwal, Rohit Kumar, Rishank Devadiga and Monu Goyat in their ranks.

In Deepak Hooda, Manjeet Chhillar, Surender Nada and Girish Ernak, India also boast of top-class all-rounders and defenders to lend a perfect balance to the side.

The second match of the opening day will see 2016 World Cup finalists Iran take on the Republic of Korea.

Two-time Asian Games runners-up Iran will be favourites to top group B and would look to challenge heavyweights India down the line.

Iran have lost to India thrice in the final of the Kabaddi World Cup (2004, 2007 and 2016) and the six-nation meet will provide an excellent opportunity to reignite their rivalry.

All eyes would be on Argentina who are new to the sport and their president Ricardo Acuna said, "The introduction of kabaddi in Argentina has redefined sports participation. This will surely be a moment of reckoning for Argentina's kabaddi talent."

Match starts: India vs Pakistan 8pm IST; Iran vs Korea 9pm IST.

With inputs from PTI

Updated Date: Jun 23, 2018 19:06:51 IST