UP Yoddha succumbed to their third straight loss on home ground, going down narrowly 22-24 to Jaipur Pink Panthers in an inter zone challenge of the Pro Kabaddi League (PKL) Season 5 at the Babu Banarasi Das Indoor Stadium here on Sunday. The match started on an even note with both sides tightening the screws as the half time score read 10-11, in favour of the hosts.
On the backfoot after losing two consecutive matches in their home leg, the Yoddhas strengthened their defence when it mattered the most as the first half scores depicted. Raider Nitin Tomar’s raid point in the second minute helped the hosts open their account before Tushar Patil scored two points to give Jaipur a 5-3 lead after four minutes. Jasvir Singh, captaining the Jaipur side in place of an injured Manjeet Chhillar, scored a raid point in the eighth minute as to help the visitors extend their lead to 7-4.
Thereafter, the hosts came back strongly to level the scores at 8-8 after 12 minutes before both the sides went neck and neck to end the first half. The second half began with Jaipur drawing level at 11-11 in the opening minute before Rajesh Narwal scored with a raid point in the 23rd minute to hand the hosts a slender 13-12 lead.
A slew of empty raids followed as both teams were tied at 15-15 after 29 minutes. Rishank Devadiga made a successful raid in the 31st minute to break the deadlock as UP surged ahead 18-15.A With less than five minutes to go, Mahesh Goud made a successful raid in the 37th minute to give UP a 19-18 lead before Nitan Rawal responded with a raid point to level things up 19-19. The drama continued in the final two minutes as both teams gave it all before Jaipur inflicted an all out in the dying minutes of the match to turn the tide in their favour.