Hosts Telugu Titans suffered fourth consecutive defeat with a 24-30 loss to Bengal Warriors in the fifth edition of the Pro Kabaddi League (PKL) at the Gachibowli Indoor Stadium on Wednesday. Raider Maninder Singh (9 points) and versatile South Korean player Jang Kun Lee (eight points) powered Bengal to a great win in their first match of the campaign.
For Telugu, Vikas contributed eight points, while Rahul Chaudhari and Nilesh Salunke bagged (five points each but they couldn't stop their team from suffering fourth loss in five outings.
After defeating U Mumba in the tournament opener on Friday, Telugu fell to double defending champions Patna Pirates, Bengaluru Bulls and UP Yoddha.
Telugu made a decent start, holding a 6-4 lead but Maninder earned three touch points to give Bengal 7-6 lead. Nimble-footed Jang Kun Lee too made an impact for Bengal.
Maninder, with his strong physical presence combined with agility, continued his impressive show as two of his raids earned two points each as Telugu struggled with their defence structure.
Bengal forced an early all out on Telugu to lead 13-8 in the 10th minute. The eastern outfit kept a check on Rahul Chaudhari and Vikas which helped them to keep their five-point lead with the score at 19-14 at halftime.
In the second part, Telugu improved their game, both in defence and attack. But Bengal defence too stepped up and Kun Lee kept easing the pressure with occasional raiding points as the eastern franchise never kept Telugu at bay.
"It was a great start for us. Our Raiders gave us a very good beginning and then we defended well in the later part. We will further improve from this performance," captain Surjeet Singh said after the match.
Most raid points - Maninder Singh 9 (Bengal Warriors)
Most tackle points Vinod Kumar 2 (Telugu Titans)
Total raid points: Telugu Titans 16 Bengal Warriors 19
Total tackle points: Telugu Titans 7 Bengal Warriors 6
All Outs: One (Bengal Warriors)
(With IANS Inputs)