Mumbai :Skipper Mamtha Poojari led from the front as Firebirds hammered Ice Divas 25-12 to win the opening match of the Women’s Kabaddi Challenge on Tuesday.
The match marked a historic occasion as it was for the first time that women Kabaddi players played at the same court as men i.e. 13 by 10 square metres in a 30 minute match.
Firebirds skipper Mamtha Poojari produced a splendid performance to lead the team to a comfortable victory.
In the first half, both the teams looked to their inspirational players– Abhilasha Mhatre for Ice Divas and Mamtha Poojari for Firebirds. It was Poojari who came out on top in the first half as she scored four raid points and one tackle point. Mhatre, on the other hand, could muster only one raid point. With Mhatre looking off-color, it was Sonali Shingate who took the offensive mantle and scored four raid points.
The Firebirds inflicted their first all out in the seventh minute to lead 9-4. Asian Games silver medalist and Ice Divas captain Abhilasha Mhatre got her first raid point in the eighth minute. Firebirds led 13-8 at the end of the first half.
The second half began slowly as both teams adopted a cautious approach and after the first five minutes of the second half, Firebirds led by 14-9. Ice Divas lost Abhilasha Mhatre in the eighth minute of the second half.
Poojari’s side produced a superb all-round performance as both attackers and defenders chipped in. Abhilasha Mhatre came back on the field for the last five minutes but was unable to inspire her team as they crashed to a heavy defeat with the difference of 13 points.(ANI)