Panchkula (Haryana), Jan 17 (CNMSports): Hosts Haryana Hammers edged past UP Dangal 5-2 in a Pro Wrestling League Season 4 tie at the Tau Devi Lal Indoor Stadium here on Wednesday.
The last bout of the evening sealed the deal in favour of the hosts, as the women's 57kg weight category between Haryana's junior world champion Anastasia Nichita and UP's 2017 Asian championships silver medallist Sarita went in favour of the hosts with the PWL debutant Anastasia pining the Indian down and clinching the bout 9-0.
The men's 57kg category bout between the two Indians, Ravi Kumar of Haryana Hammers and Naveen of UP Dangal, brought the best in the wrestlers, which saw Ravi, the 2018 World U23 Championships silver medallist, taking a point lead against the 2018 World Junior Championships silver medallist Naveen after a hard-fought first round.
But despite his best effort, Naveen couldn't create the opening he required and Ravi went on adding point after point to finally clinch the bout 7-2 and give last year's runners-up Hammers a 4-2 winning lead in their first match this season.
Before that, the European U23 silver medallist Iraki Misituri of UP Dangal tried his best to challenge the Hammers' two-time World Championships bronze medallist Ali Shabanov in their men's 86kg category bout but fell behind by two points after the first round.
The experienced Hammers' wrestler kept up the pressure in the second round too and clinched the bout 6-1 to put the hosts ahead after the first bout of the evening.
The 2018 World Championships silver medal winner Vanesa Kaladzinskaya didn't have an easy time against the 2017 Commonwealth Championships gold medallist Seema in the 53kg category.
Vanesa took a 2-0 lead at the break and held on to it for most part of the bout. But Seema bagged two points towards the close to raise the expectation of the crowd of a close finish before Vanesa used her experience to clinch the bout 3-2 and help UP restore parity.
Last year's national champion Rajneesh fought the most intense bout of the evening against Pankaj Rana, much unlike the 16-0 score line will suggests. Up against his countryman UP Dangal's Pankaj Rana in the 65kg category, Rajneesh capitalised on some costly mistakes by the Dangal wrestler to clinch the bout on technical superiority and put the Hammers ahead.
The 2018 Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Haryana Hammers' Kiran was expected to give a much tougher fight to the Estonian wrestler of UP Dangal Epp Mae in the 76kg category.
But it was the foreign wrestler who clinched the technically challenging bout 5-0 to put UP Dangal's campaign back on track.
In the first super heavyweight bout of PWL 4, Haryana Hammers' Ukranian wrestler Khotsianivski Aleksander got the better of UP Dangal's Georgi Sakandelidze 3-0 after an intense battle for supremacy to put his team ahead with two bouts to go.