2016 Kabaddi World Cup :: Hosts India overwhelm Thailand, set up dream final with Iran - News

Hosts India overwhelm Thailand, set up dream final with Iran

21 October 2016

India trounced a timid Thailand on Friday night in what appeared to be a one-sided affair. The Thai dream run came to an abrupt halt when the host nation gave one of the best performances in the 2016 Kabaddi World Cup, winning with a 73-20 scoreline. Remarkable raiding accuracy mixed with a penchant for successful tackles on the opponent every time have been the key factors for India’s victory more than anything else.

Pardeep Narwal and Ajay Thakur’s raiding prowess silenced the Thais at the back with a whopping 90% raid accuracy – so accurate that Pardeep neither got tackled nor returned with an empty raid even once in 10 raids. Meanwhile, Surender Nada’s High 5 was equally instrumental in the team’s success.

Thailand, a team dotted with young talents like Khomsan Thongkham, Tin Phonchoo, Santi Bunchoet and Sarawut Hopet failed to put up an impressive show despite their enviable streak in the group stage. Defensive lapses, pitiable attempts to cover points and desperate raids sum up the visitors’ evening on the mat when it mattered the most for them. It was the sheer experience of Team India that gave them a tactical edge over the losing Thailand side in Ahmedabad. The electrifying atmosphere at The Arena was transformed into a carnival the moment India welcomed a much-awaited victory with the final whistle. 

The Thai players can hold their heads high considering they were the youngest team in the competition, and had a near-perfect record heading into the semi-finals. 

With the teary exit of the brave Koreans at the hands of a destructive Iran, it will be safe to expect a one-of-its-kind thriller when India face the latter in the grand final of the 2016 Kabaddi World Cup on October 22. Undoubtedly, the most anticipated clash will indeed be a dreamy affair as one can expect to see a lot of surprises, a rollercoaster of emotions and most of all, the greatest kabaddi show on the planet between two arch-rivals. Coverage begins at 19:45 IST on the Star network and hotstar.

For the complete scorecard of India vs Thailand, visit our MatchCentre.