New Delhi, Oct 3 (IANS): Haryana Steelers, on Monday, announced veteran defender Joginder Narwal as their captain for the upcoming Pro Kabaddi League Season 9, which is set to begin on October 7.
Joginder, a two-time title-winning left-corner, was bought by the JSW Sports-owned franchise for Rs 20 lakh at the auction in August this year.
Because of his exploits over the past few seasons, Joginder Narwal has been regarded as one of the best defenders in the league.
Speaking about his appointment, the 36-year-old expressed delight and said that he will work hard to help his team win the trophy this season.
"I am grateful to the Steelers and JSW Sports management for trusting me with this responsibility. I am confident in our team's abilities. Working along with the players in our squad at the training sessions has given me the confidence that we are ready to challenge for the title. Our team has bonded well in the pre-season and it will help in the way we communicate with each other on the mat," he was quoted as saying in a release on Monday.
"I take the role of the captaincy extremely seriously. Haryana Steelers fans have always expected the best from us. I will work hard to not let our fans down and back the faith that the team management has shown in me," Joginder added.
Speaking on Narwal's appointment as captain, Haryana Steelers head coach Manpreet Singh said, "Joginder is a very experienced player with many years of professional kabaddi under his belt. He has been the captain of the Haryana team at the Nationals. There are hardly any players with as much experience as him in the league, and hence everyone around respects him. I am confident the players will back him," he said.
"Joginder is also a very strategic player. He is always aware of what the situation is in the match and he devises the plans accordingly. He is quick to decide when to slow down a match, and when to increase the speed of the attacks, and these decisions can often turn the game on its head. We are confident he will lead the team to the best of his abilities," coach Manpreet added.
Joginder began his Pro Kabaddi League career with Bengaluru Bulls in 2015, in which he scored 30 points in 14 games. The left corner moved to Puneri Paltan in the 2016 season, where he earned 38 points in 16 games. After an injury-prone season for U Mumba in 2018, Joginder moved to Dabang Delhi, where he grew into a key player for the franchise.
Joginder earned 51 points in 22 games in 2018 for Delhi and was one of the reasons behind Delhi's climb to the final in 2019. He scored 32 points in 19 games in 2019 and helped Delhi win the trophy.
Haryana Steelers will begin their campaign against Bengal Warriors on October 8th at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru, Karnataka.