Pratik Waikar was the superhero for Telugu Yoddhas as they sealed their name for Qualifier 2 of the inaugural season of the Ultimate Kho Kho League by defeating Chennai Quick Guns 61-43. Playing in the Eliminator against their southern rival Chennai Quick Guns, after having finished third on the league's point table in the league stage, Telugu Yoddhas showcased what they are made of with some scintillating display of defensive and attacking moves to now just be one step away from the summit clash on 4th September, 2022. Captain Pratik Waikar, played a defining role earning 8 crucial Dream Run points for Telugu Yoddhas, while Avdhut Patil and Adarsh Mohite decimated the Chennai Quick Gun Defense to help the team representing the Telugu speaking region of India achieve an 18-point win. Adarsh Mohite won the Best Attacker of the game award while Captain Pratik Waikar walked away with the Ultimate Kho award of the game.
Telugu Yoddhas will now face the losing team from Qualifier 2 - Gujarat Giants on 3rd September 2022. The match will be broadcast LIVE & Exclusive on the Sony Sports Network and LIVE streamed on the SonyLIV platform 7:45 PM onwards.
Telugu Yoddhas won the toss and elected to attack and started off strong with a mix of two-pointers and three-pointers. The score line was 10-0 to Telugu Yoddhas' favour when Chennai Quick Guns defenders from the second batch were in their elements earning 2 back-to-back Dream run points before being ousted. Telugu Yoddhas thereafter tried making a comeback but could only add another 9 points to their kitty while giving away another 2 Dream Run points to Chennai Quick Guns. The turn came to an end with the score line reading 19-6 to Telugu Yoddhas Favour.
Turn 2 started on a promising note for Chennai Quick Guns, but Telugu Yoddhas’ Pratik Waikar was in his elements as he wreaked havoc by earning 6 crucial Dream Run Points at one go. Thereafter Chennai Quick Guns reorganized themselves to not let points slip away as the turn ended with a solitary point lead for them with the score line reading 25-26.
“It was our plan to choose ‘attack’ first as we always knew that our defense is strong. I am very happy that we played well and as per our plans, because, not only did our defense play the way we expected, our attack also leaped their way forward to help us move forward in the league,” said Pratik Kiran Waikar, Captain, Telugu Yoddhas and also the winner of the Ultimate Kho award, after their win.
As much as defenders came to the rescue of Telugu Yoddhas in the first innings, turn 3 was the turning point for them. The attackers for Telugu Yoddhas in the form of Adarsh Mohite and Avdhut Patil showcased their attacking prowess to get a full-on chase by ousting all the batches of Chennai Quick Guns defenders in less than 6 minutes while earning 3 extra ‘full on chase’ bonus points. Thereafter with another 3 pointer, Telugu Yoddhas wrapped up Turn 3 with a massive 33-point lead as the scoreboard read 59-26 to their favour.
In the final turn of the game while Chennai Quick Guns did try making a comeback, but given the huge deficit and Telugu Yoddhas impeccable defense, that deficit became a huge target to achieve. Chennai Quick Guns while earning only 17 points also gave away another 2 Dream Run points again to the captain of Telugu Yoddhas – Pratik Waikar. The game came to an end with Telugu Yoddhas defeating Chennai Quick Guns 61-43 to move into qualifier 2 to be played on 3rd September 2022.