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Utkarsh Mandir girls clinch MSSA U-16 kabaddi title

Utkarsh Mandir High School (Malad) outplayed Holy Cross High School (Parel) 31-07 and clinched the under-16 girls title of the Mumbai Schools Sports Association (MSSA) inter-school kabaddi tournament at Azad Maidan on Saturday.

Utkarsh Mandir players hold back Holy Cross raider Shweta Lohar (in blue) during the Mumbai Schools Sports Association girls U-16 inter-school kabaddi final at Azad Maidan on Saturday. Pic/Suresh KK
Utkarsh Mandir players hold back Holy Cross raider Shweta Lohar (in blue) during the Mumbai Schools Sports Association girls U-16 inter-school kabaddi final at Azad Maidan on Saturday. Pic/Suresh KK

The Malad outfit won the MSSA title for the second time in a row after beating Mahatma Gandhi Vidya Mandir (Bandra) 26-17 in last year's final. Aditi Shashtri of Utkarsh Mandir was the top raider with 12 points to demolish first-time participants Holy Cross.

While Vrushali Shevala got nine points, Rasika Avere picked up seven and Shraddha Thomre chipped in with five points for Utkarsh Mandir.

Utkarsh Mandir had a brilliant start and managed to get their opponents all out twice in the first half for a 23-03 score at the end of the first half.

In the second half, the Malad school played defensively and still got the better of Holy Cross, grabbing another eight points while the Parel outfit just managed to pick up four points and lost 31-07.

Utkarsh Mandir coach Sandesh Gudekar said: "We knew our opponents are participating for the first time so we ensured we attack right from the start… get them to panic in the first half and then play defensively which worked out well for us."

Good attempt
Holy Cross High School coach Brian Almeida said, "we are a bit disappointed with our performance. We lacked focus today, but it is a good result for us since we managed to make it to the final on our first attempt."

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