India booked their place in the semi-finals of the ongoing Kabaddi World Cup with a thumping 69-18 victory over England in their group clash at TransStadia Arena here last evening.
Pardeep Narwal scored 13 points while Ajay Thakur scored 11 pointsas India made full use of their squad depth to notch a comfortable win and ended their group campaign on a high.
After suffering a shock defeat in their opening match against Republic of Korea, India bounced back in style and finished the group matches with a whopping score difference of 174.
England, on the other hand, can take a lot of heart from their performances as they finished fourth in Group B with 10 points.
England made a bright start as Someshwar Kalia scored two points in the first minute to lead 2-1. Sandeep Narwal scored with a super raid in the third minute as India led 5-2.
Ajay Thakur scored with a two-point raid in the fifth minute as India led 8-3 and reduced England to just two men. India inflicted the first all out of the match in the sixth minute to lead 12-3. India’s star raider Pardeep Narwal scored his first points in the seventh minute to give India 14-3 lead. Keshav Gupta scored with a two-point read in the 10th minute as England trailed 5-17.
Sandeep Narwal was in great raiding form as he scored six points in 13 minutes. India inflicted second all out in the 13th minute to lead 24-5. England defence let them down as they failed to score a single point in the first 15 minutes. India inflicted another all out in the 16th minute as India took a commanding 33-5 lead. Such was India’s dominance that they went on a 20-0 run in eight minutes to lead 37-5 after 18 minutes. Pardeep Narwal attained a super 10 in the first half whereas Surjeet got a high five as India totally outclassed England. India inflicted fourth all out in the 20th minute to lead 45-6 at the end of the first half.
India brought on five substitutes in the second half, including Rahul Chaudhari, to make use of their squad. Nitin Tomar scored two points in the 23rd minute as India led 49-7. England were still looking for their first tackle point and their star raider Tope Adewalure struggled to get raid points. India inflicted another all out in the 28th minute to lead 57-8. Adewalure scored his first raid point in the 30th minute as England trailed 9-58.
India took their foot off the gas in the second half but it was still a lot for England to handle. Adewalure scored his second point and became the first man to score 50 points in the 2016 Kabaddi World Cup. With less than five minutes to go, India led 64-14 as Rahul Chaudhari scored his third point of the match. India cruised in the last few minutes as they led 65-15 after 38 minutes. Ajay Thakur attained a super 10 in the 39th minute as India won 69-18.