Match by match planning helped us to clinch the title: Ankita
Pune: There were two responsibilities on Ankita Jagtap, when she was announced captain of the Pune team for the 67th Maharashtra state kabaddi championship — first to lead the team that has players with less experience players and second to give her best performance as a senior player.
Ankita succeeded in both, captaining the side for the first time, and ensuring that the team will not let down their performance in the absence of senior players like Deepika Joseph, Sayali Keripale and Snehal Shinde.
In the team of 12, Ankita and Pooja Shelar were only experienced players. Ankita tells Jigar Hindocha the team’s journey to the title. The state championship was played from December 19-22 at Chiplun Ratnagiri. Pune defeated Mumbai City 22-20 to lift the title. Ankita trains at Rajmata Jijau Kabaddi Sang, Shukrawar peth.
As a senior player and captain, how did you handled the team?
Right from the start, strategy was to take match by match. We used to hold discussion after every practice session and before the tournament in our camp held at Nehru Stadium, Swargate. After practice, we used to analyse our game. Pooja Shelar was another senior member in the team. I kept on pushing juniors and encouraged them to deliver their best.
Rate the performance of Pune team
We delivered quality performance. Pune district team is always a better team than others when it comes to state championship. Our women’s team has won the state title for 22 times till now.
Which was the most challenging match?
Mumbai Suburb was a challenging team whom we easily defeated 34-26 in the semi-final. We are getting good players from Mumbai city and Suburb while Pune has a history of producing promising players.
How do you differentiate playing on mat and mud?
On mat we are unable to give jerk and that is easily possible on mud. Injury chances are more on mat, so we need proper practice. Injuries occurring on mat take time to recover. As most of the tournaments are still played on mud, we need to continue practice on mud.
Should there be pro kabaddi league for women?
Yes. It has helped men’s game to grow and same will happen to women. It will also help players to grow economically.
Ankita Jagtap, Captain, Pune women team
Pune team has always delivered best performance when it comes to state championship. There was pressure on us, but girls played well.
Results of Pune women’s team:
Final: beat Mumbai City 22-20
Semi-final: beat Mumbai Suburbs 34-26
Quarter-final: beat Kolhapur 47-22
Group match 2: bt Sindhudurg 43-3
Group match 1: bt Sangli 54-17