Bengaluru, Jan 25 (IANS): UP Yoddha have been on a roll in their last five games in the Pro Kabaddi League Season 8 with Surrender Gill emerging as their top raider.
The team traditionally known for one of the strongest defenses, this season has reached the top-four of the league table with an effective raiding unit, with the inclusion of star raider Pardeep Narwal.
However, surprisingly it's not Pardeep who has been making news for the Yoddhas but it's their old warhorse Surender Gill who has emerged as the shining star as a raider for the team.
Gill says the presence of Pardeep Narwal and Srikant Jadhav has taken the pressure off him and he is able to play his natural game.
Gill, who hails from a small village in Rohtak currently stands 5th in the t‘ble of 'Tota' Points' by an individual with a total of 111 points in 12 matches this season. He also has five Super Raids in 12 matches and is placed just behind Maninder Singh, who leads the Super raid chart with seven Super raids.
What is more important is that Gill's own form has played a very critical role in turning around games for the Yoddhas and somewhere these statistics do not justify the magnitude of his performance on the outcome of Games for UP Yoddha.
Gill kicked off his Kabaddi journey with the academy at Dadri and thereafter he played at All India University level. Being just an average kabaddi player, Gill in no time transformed himself and is now a well-known kabaddi star in the country.
"I'm very happy with my performance and it has changed a lot from last year, I've worked hard for this season and I'm glad to perform for my team. A large part of my performance is also the result of some rigorous training sessions at our UP Yoddha BK Kabaddi Academy in Meerut before the start of the season," said Gill when asked about his take from his performance so far this season.
Talking of his success in super raids and transformation this season he said, "I feel no pressure on the mat. Having Pardeep bhai and Srikant bhai by my side helps me to play naturally without any stress and thus I'm able to give my best."
Talking further about his training schedule and role Gill said, "There are no special training programs for individual players. Every player on our side is treated equally by the coach and we are working under his guidance. We all are like a family and a large part of this happened because of our long pre-season training at our state-of-the-art UP Yoddha BK Kabaddi Academy in Meerut."
"That really helped us gel well with each other helping us develop an understanding that is helping us tremendously on the mat now. Yes, all of us have specific roles within the team, like this year, he made me train to earn bonus points," Gill was quoted as saying in a release by his team.