Naveen Kumar proved once again why he is regarded as one of the best raiders of the Pro Kabaddi League (PKL) as he helped Dabang Delhi register a 46-44 win against Jaipur Pink Panthers in a high-scoring contest at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium on Wednesday.
The raider picked up 16 points, including a record-setting 10th consecutive Super 10, as the Delhi side overcame a stiff challenge from Jaipur to consolidate their position on top of the points table.
The first half of the match saw both teams trade major blows. The Delhi unit had a dream start to the match when their raider Chandran Ranjit pulled off a mighty 5-point raid in the second minute of the match to severely reduce the Jaipur men on the mat.
Jaipur, who went into the game on the back of a three-match losing streak, looked clueless as a dominant Delhi side inflicted the first All-Out of the match in the fourth minute (fastest All-Out this season).
Jaipur didn't take the All-Out lightly though and captain Deepak Niwas Hooda initiated a comeback with some strong raids. Nitin Rawal picked up a five-point raid in the 12th minute to clean up the Delhi players and force an All-Out on the table toppers.
The closely-fought first half ended with Delhi leading by two points (21-19).
The second half, much like the first, started with the Delhi side on the front foot. But Sachin Narwal produced an important two-point raid that saved Jaipur from an All-Out and handed the momentum to the season one winners.
Elavarasan produced two mighty super tackles as Jaipur started moving into the lead and inflicted another All-Out on Delhi in the 12th minute of the second half to make the scores 35-29 in their favour.
Naveen however, kept the Delhi side in the game, clinching his 10th consecutive Super 10 with five minutes remaining. A three-point raid by Delhi's Vijay in the dying minutes made it a close affair.
And not surprisingly it was the table-toppers who held their nerve to pick a final minute All-Out that pushed them to a 2-point lead that proved enough for a win.