2016 Kabaddi World Cup :: Anup Kumar: We will face Iran with a cool mindset - News

Anup Kumar: We will face Iran with a cool mindset

22 October 2016

Thailand may have had a successful stint in the group stages but the experience they picked up from the league games was not enough to shock India in the second semi-final of the 2016 Kabaddi World Cup. The youngest side in the competition, they had a hard time figuring out India’s gameplay and lost the reigns of the match throughout, eventually losing by a mammoth margin of 53 points (73-20). The hosts now face a buoyant Iran in the big final.

The home side, which is also heavily touted to lift the trophy, eased into the semi-final comfortably and used their experience to give the visitors a masterclass in kabaddi. But they will be wary of Iran whose dramatic victory, against Republic of Korea, comes as a huge threat.

Ahead of the big Saturday title clash, captain Anup Kumar and assistant coach K. Baskaran interacted with the media to reflect on the tournament and on what lies ahead.

How did India rate its semi-final opponent? “Thailand have made it so far in the competition. I don’t think they are a weak them. Maybe they were a bit nervous about facing us; the pressure got to them and they lost,” said the India skipper.

Baskaran was delighted with his team’s result too. “We are happy with the win, the team played well and deserved to win. We had a strategy before the game and the team followed it exactly. We are looking forward to the final now.”

Talking about the final, the mighty Iranians stand in the way of the glittering prize. How is the team planning to play them? Any strategies discussed?

“Iran is a good team,” said Anup Kumar. “We are going to play them with a very cool (mindset) and are going to prepare well for them. We have had a good record against them and will look to maintain it.”

“The strategy depends on the situation of the game. Our raiders have a bit more skill than theirs. I think that gives us the advantage over Iran. We are prepared for every situation and will look to get the win against Iran,” the determined skipper emphasised before concluding.

The India versus Iran mega contest will light up your screens on the Star network and hotstar, starting 19:45 IST on October 22. Don’t forget to tune in to catch what we expect (and hope) to be a blockbuster finale.