2016 Kabaddi World Cup :: Day 10: Group B teams race for second semi-final berth - News

Day 10: Group B teams race for second semi-final berth

16 October 2016

It’s the last time three matches will be played in a single day of the 2016 Kabaddi World Cup and a triple dose of entertaining sporting action awaits fans today. Group B’s first representatives of the day, Thailand and United States of America will begin proceedings at 18:50 IST and then also end it with the mouth-watering Japan vs Kenya encounter scheduled to begin at 21:00 IST. Sandwiched between these two matches is the Group A match involving Republic of Korea and England.

Thailand vs USA

After the loss to Iran in their opening match, Thailand have been in superb form with two crushing wins over Poland and a tough Kenyan side. Khomsan Thongkham and Khunakon Chanjaroen have excelled at raiding while Tin Phonchoo has been the standout in defence. The Thais are overwhelming favourites for this one and will look to use this as good practice for the crunch match against Japan on October 19.

USA may not have a lot of experience, but have tried their best to stand up to the tough competition. They got a lot tackle points (16) on board in their previous game against Poland than they ever did. Unfortunately, they couldn’t stop them from getting a tournament high score. The Thais will be incredibly tough opponents and the Americans will look to learn as much as they can. Chances of an upset? Unlikely!

Republic of Korea vs England

The Koreans have been on a roll in the tournament with four straight wins and will look to cement their lead in Group A in their final league match. They have been outstanding as a team and shown great belief in themselves, managing to come out on top even when the chips are down. A loss to England will scupper their chances of topping the group which could result in a semi-final clash with heavyweights Iran.

England have become better as the tournament progressed. They will once again bank on the power of Temi Tope Adewalure to rattle the Koreans. Skipper Someshwar Kalia has played an important role too along with Keshav Gupta and Tejash Depala. Their final two encounters will be their toughest so far and will test the side’s capabilities to the fullest. A win even in one of these two matches (next against India) will be huge for England.

Japan vs Kenya

Japan have been impressive so far but tasted their first defeat of the tournament against a dominant Iran side. Masayuki Shimokawa and Co. will go into the first of the final two crunch games with their spirit intact after a fighting performance. The Japanese will bank on speed and guile to overcome the power and size of the Kenyans. It has all the makings of a cracker of a match.

Kenya will look to make amends after a disappointing loss to Thailand in their last game. They may not have much of a chance to make it to the last four but would want to give more than just a scare to a strong Japanese side. The David Mosambayi-led side has won hearts with their performance and a win here and then against USA in their last league game could yet mathematically give them a chance if Japan get past Thailand.

Don’t forget to tune in to all the kabaddi action at The Arena, Ahmedabad – LIVE on the Star network and hotstar.