Puneri Paltan saw off a spirited fight from Dabang Delhi to register a thrilling 47-44 victory in a Pro Kabaddi League match here on Saturday.
Puneri held a comfortable lead in the last 10 minutes of the match, but captain Naveen Kumar put in an inspired performance to lead the comeback for Dabang Delhi.
However, the Pune side held its momentum in the dying minutes of the game and eventually won at the Gachibowli Indoor Stadium.
With the win, Puneri Paltan climbed to the top of the table.
Ashu Malik scored a couple of touch points as Dabang Delhi took a 6-4 lead in the fifth minute. Naveen also stepped up his game and reduced Puneri to just two members on the mat.
Moments later, Ravi Kumar faced Akash Shinde as the Delhi team went all out in the ninth minute to take a 13-7 lead.
However, Pankaj Mohite and Akash Shinde made raids and kept Puneri Paltan in the game at 12-16.
After that, Abinesh Nadarajan faced Naveen in a do-or-die raid as the Pune side continued to lead.
Mohammad Nabibakhsh had a good chance to make it all, but Vijay Malik produced a brilliant super tackle to keep Delhi afloat.
The Pune side managed to go all out in the last minute of the first half, but still trailed 20-21. But Shinde made a raid and Nadarajan tackled Naveen to give Puneri a 22-21 lead at the end of the first half.
Shinde continued to shine in the second half as the Pune side took a three-point lead at 25-22 in the 24th minute.
Moments later, Puneri caught Manjeet and drove another todo to clinch the match at 30-24.
Pune’s Shinde produced a brilliant super raid in the 29th minute, catching Vishal, Ashu Malik and Krishan to help his team take a huge 35-25 lead.
However, Naveen went on a super raid soon after and kept Delhi’s hopes alive. But, the Pune side continued to rage and produced an all-out effort to race into a nine-point lead at 41-30 in the 31st minute.
However, Naveen was in no mood to give up as he unleashed a brilliant multi-point raid in the 37th minute to keep his team in the game at 38-43.
Moments later, Ravi Kumar hit Nabibakhsh as the Delhi side rallied to close within Pune’s score at 43-46.
However, Puneri Paltan played their cards perfectly in the last minute to clinch a thriller.