New Delhi, Dec 21 (IANS) Mumbai Garuda jumped to the top of the points table with a 5-2 victory against Dilli Veer in a Pro Wrestling League (PWL) contest here on Monday. With the win, Mumbai moved to eight points from four matches, winning all their bouts. Dilli remained at the bottom having lost all their four matches. Mumbai came into the match as the overwhelming favourites, being unbeaten in the competition.
They won the toss and decided to block men’s 57 kilogram category; Dilli blocked women’s 58kg bout in return. The first match-up of the evening was between the 97kg category contest between Dilli’s Gurpal Singh against Mumbai’s Georgian Odikadze Elizbar. European silver medallist Elizbar took a swift 2-0 lead in the first round and maintained his ascendancy in the beginning of the second round to win 5-0. Dilli’s Vinesh Phogat had the responsibility of pulling her team back into the contest when she took on sister Ritu Phogat in the 48kg category.
The Asian Games bronze medallist started in right earnest moving 2-0 and maintaining her lead in the first round. She jumped to a 6-0 lead in the next round and rounded off a comfortable victory 8-0 to square the contest at 1-1. Mumbai’s Pardeep squared off in the 74kg category against Dinesh Kumar and went 2-0 soon after the beginning of the bout. Dinesh was soon level on points after launching into a successful single leg attack and then showed great energy and maturity to shoot up to 5-2. Dinesh was under pressure in the closing stages of the second round but held on to a 5-3 win to give Dilli a 2-1 lead. The onus was on Mumbai’s Odunayo Adekuoroye to restore parity against Liliya Horishna in the 53kg category. She started confidently and was soon 6-0 up. Adekuoroye was just too strong for Horishna and raced to a 10-0 margin in the second round forcing the referee to award her the contest for technical superiority. With the tie pegged at 2-2, Georgian Giorgi Sakandelidze and Krishan Kumar squared off in the super heavyweight section (125 kg). Giorgi used his abundant experience to launch swift attacks and won due to technical superiority (10-0) in just 46 seconds, enabling Mumbai to put their nose ahead 3-2. Mumbai hoped three-time world champion American Adeline Gray would carry on the momentum in the 69 kg fight against Nikki. She was at ease from the very beginning and streamrolled past her opponent in two minutes and 18 seconds, winning easily via technical superiority (10-0) to hand Mumbai the bout 4-2 up. World Championships 2015 silver medallist in 65kg, Dilli’s Ikhtiyor Navruzov took on 2013 Asian champion Amit Dhankar in the inconsequential seventh match of the bout. But Amit was not short of motivation and took a 2-0 lead but Navruzov fought back to level 2-2. Amit was undeterred and got back ahead at 6-2. The Uzbek wrestler mounted another counter-offensive but the Indian prevailed 9-6.