Fri, Dec 08, 2006 - Page 22 News List

Asian Games: Unbeaten India maintains stranglehold on kabaddi

AFP , DOHA

India retained their Asian Games kabaddi title with a 35-23 win over Pakistan here on Wednesday to maintain their stranglehold on an event they have never lost.

Victory gave India their fifth gold medal out of five since the sport was introduced into the Games in 1990.

"I wanted the team to win gold under my captaincy," India skipper Dinesh Kumar said.

"We have always won at the Asian Games. This is the first time I have been captain and I wanted to make my country proud. The team played with `josh' [full of energy] and our defense was very good," Kumar said.

India's win was never in doubt.

They led 21-14 at the break and they sent a packed house at the Aspire Dome into raptures with their second successive win over Pakistan this week to follow their 31-20 triumph in the league stages.

India also won all three games in the first round leaving Pakistan with a record of just one win against their bitter rival in the history of the sport, at the SAF Games in Dhaka in 1993.

Pakistan coach Zubair Ahmed blamed the officials for his team's defeat.

"We lost because the referees did not see a lot of the bonus points and touches we made," Ahmed said.

"The kabaddi federation should look at the videos and sort this out," he added.

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