A DOMINATING PERFORMANCE by Haryana Hammers saw them register their first victory against defending champions Mumbai Maharathi on the opening day of the Pro Wrestling League Season 2 at the K D Jadhav Indoor Stadium here today. Present at the occasion were Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting, Shri Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, President, WFI.
Mumbai captain Erica Wiebe won the toss and blocked the 70kg Men's category while Haryana chose to block the 48kg Women's category. The first bout was fought between Rajneesh (Haryana Hammers) and Vikas Kumar (Mumbai Maharathi) in the 65 kg Men's category. Rajneesh executed some skillful moves as he combined attack with defence cleverly to prevail over Vikas 7-2.
The second bout for the 75 kg Women's category was won by Mumbai, as they drew level with Haryana. Canadian Erica Wiebe, who won Gold in the 2016 Rio Olympics, led from the front as Haryana's Kiran proved to be the weaker opponent. Erica won the bout by technical superiority as Kiran failed to score a single point compared to the Canadian's 16.
Haryana came back strongly in the third bout, as Russian Abdusalam Gadisov employed single leg attack and ankle hold takedowns to effectively score against his opponent, Ukraine's Pavlo Oliinyk. Haryana secured a 2-1 lead by virtue of this victory.
The fourth bout was contested in the 53 kg Women's category as grapplers Sofia Mattsson from Sweden and India's Lalita Sehrawat played an aggressive game. Although Lalita kept searching for points, Sofia who had earned a Bronze in the 2016 Olympics, prevailed over her and eventually won by Pin Fall.
Even as Mumbai conceded a 1-3 lead in the tie, they tried to stage a comeback as Azerbaijan-born Jabrayil Hasanov outclassed his opponent Sumit Sehrawat, clinching the bout in Mumbai's favour by virtue of technical superiority.
Haryana Hammers took full advantage of the crucial sixth bout as Marwa Amri defeated Mumbai Maharathi's Sarita 5-0. The Tunisian grappler showed full supremacy on the mat, as her technical acumen proved to be too good for Sarita. The 2016 Rio Olympics Bronze medalist clinched the tie with this victory, as Haryana took an unassailable 4-2 lead.
The final bout of the tie saw some explosive action with Mumbai's Rahul Aware completely dominating over his opponent Sandeep Tomar from Haryana. Although Sandeep had an early 3-point advantage, Rahul came from behind to display a series of well-executed takedowns to win the bout 14-5. Rahul's brilliant effort went in vain, as Haryana won the game by a 4-3 margin.
Speaking after the match, a delighted Golden Behl, Co-Owner, Haryana Hammers said,
"I believe Rahul Aware and Sandeep Tomar was the most exciting match of the days but of course we were looking forward to Sandeep's win. But in the end, it's a game and things change within fraction of seconds. We came with a target of 5-2 win but we are surely not disappointed with a 4-3 victory on the first day of PWL."
Haryana Hammers player Abdusalam Gadisov said,
"I believe our team is a great mix of some great Indian and international wrestlers and the performance on the first day has been great so far. Look forward to some more exciting matches in the coming days."