Gujarat Giants and Telugu Yoddhas extended their winning starts in the inaugural edition of Ultimate Kho Kho by securing contrasting victories at the Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex, Mahalunge, Pune, Maharashtra on Tuesday.
While Gujarat Giants made to work hard by Odisha Juggernauts during a close five-point win, Telugu Yoddhas thrashed Rajasthan Warriors by 21 points comfortably, thanks to Adarsh Mohite’s brilliant all-round show.
It was second successive victory for both sides.
Odisha Juggernauts ended the first turn with a 23-4 lead. Mahesha P stood out in the first seven minutes of the game for them as he scored eight points by capturing three Gujarat Giants players that included two with dives.
However, with Aniket Pote and Jaggannath Das dismissing two players each, Gujarat Giants fought-back when they turned to attack and finished the first innings with a 26-25 score in their favour.
Odisha Juggernauts scored 24 points in the first seven minutes of second half to take a 49-26 lead.
It was skipper Ranjan Shetty who came to the rescue of Gujarat Giants when the scores were locked at 49-48 in opposition’s favour with less than 90 second left in the game. Ranjan captured Odisha Juggernauts defender with a sensational pole dive dismissal as Gujarat Giants completed a thrilling win with 54-49 score.
Earlier in the first match of the day, Mohite impressed in the defence as he spent three minutes 43 seconds on the field in the first innings and then scored 10 points to guide Telugu Yoddhas to a convincing 68-47 win.
Besides Mohite, Prasad Radye scored 13 points for Telugu Yoddhas in attack with two dives while Rohan Shingade also scored 10 points.
For Rajasthan Warriors, captain Majhar Jamadar struck 17 points by capturing six wickets which included six dives. Shushant Kaldhone took four wickets, scoring nine points.
Rajasthan Warriors won the toss and chose to defend. Telugu Yoddhas started off with the powerplay by activating two wazirs—Sachin Bhargo and Pratik Waikar.
Rajasthan’s Akshay Ganpule and Govind Yadav tested the defence of Telugu Yoddhas and also earned two defence bonus points for the side. However, Arun Gunki captured Govind with a brilliant pole dive to dismiss the first opposition batch in two minutes and 36 seconds as Yoddhas continued aggression to end the first turn with 24-2 lead.
Rajasthan Warriors responded well in the attack but Mohite remained not out, spending more than three minutes on the mat to ensure Telugu Yoddhas complete the first innings with a 30-20 lead.
Telugu Yoddhas didn’t let momentum slip and extended their lead by scoring an impressive 36 points in the first seven minutes of second innings while attacking.
They further maintained their dominance in the final turn as well to seal the match quite comfortably.
India’s first-ever franchise-based Kho-Kho league has been taking place at the Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex, Mahalunge, Pune, Maharashtra with the final scheduled on September 4.
Promoted by Amit Burman in collaboration with the Kho Kho Federation of India, Ultimate Kho Kho has been telecasted live in five languages on Sony Sports Network—SONY TEN 1 (English), SONY TEN 3 (Hindi & Marathi) SONY TEN 4 (Telugu & Tamil) as well as streamed live on SonyLIV.
On Wednesday, Mumbai Khiladis will take on Gujarat Giants while Chennai Quick Guns will face Telugu Yoddhas.
Chennai Quick Guns, Gujarat Giants, Mumbai Khiladis, Odisha Juggernauts, Rajasthan Warriors and Telugu Yoddhas are the six franchises battling it out for the title over a period of 22 days.
With two matches each day, live coverage begins at 7:00 PM IST.
Artsmith Media Release