The Ultimate Kho Kho (UKK) Season 1 was filled with entertainment and blockbuster finishes at the Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex, Mahalunge, Pune. It wasn’t just the teams who were locking horns to make their mark in the maiden edition but also the players who wanted to showcase their talent on the big stage in front of the masses watching and cheering them in the arena and also through their television sets. And it would be wrong to say that stars have not been created in the maiden season, with some of the players becoming household names, thanks to their overall charisma on the mat and off it.
Who doesn't love an All-Star team? Here we take a look at those 12 players who not only set the Kho Kho mat on fire but also would become a deadly combination if brought together in one team. Here’s a look at the Dream Team of the first UKK season.
Majahar Jamadar (Rajasthan Warriors): He was the biggest asset for his side. He always stood tall in any situation for his side and led his team from the front. His side couldn’t perform well this season but he brought his A-game to the table in almost every game. He was superb with his Dives and produced 79 points with the help of it. He looked unstoppable in the attack and scored 105 points in total for Rajasthan Warriors and was the second-best Attacker of the tournament.
Arun Gunki (Telugu Yoddhas): He was the Pole Dive expert in the competition and was the third-best Attacker in UKK’s maiden edition. He was the X-factor in the Telugu Yoddhas lineup. He used to pick his targets and neutralise the Defenders before they set their eye in. On average he scored eight points in each game and amassed 96 points for his team throughout the season.
Suraj Lande (Odisha Juggernauts): He was one of the assets for Odisha Juggernauts and their best man on the attacking front. Out of 82 points that the scored in 10 matches, 60 points came from Sky Dives which shows his flexibility on the mat. He was amongst the top Attackers in the first UKK season.
Abhinandan Patil (Gujarat Giants): He was seen playing as a Wazir for Gujarat Giants and caused a lot of damage to the opposition Defenders. He never allowed the Defenders to settle on the mat and was on the hunt all the time. He scored 89 points in the 11 matches he featured in. He was named the Attacker of the Tournament for his fabulous performance.
Durvesh Salunke (Mumbai Khiladis): His primary role is of an Attacker but he came into the limelight with his fantastic eight-point Dream Run show which was the first-ever in UKK history. He played his part for Mumbai Khiladis as a Wazir with 74 points to his name and that is not all, as he also contributed to the defence by spending 13:53 minutes on the mat.
Hrushikesh Murchavade (Rajasthan Warriors): He played the second fiddle to Majahar Jamadar for Rajasthan Warriors. He was seen donning the fluorescent jersey of the Wazir quite often for Rajasthan Warriors. He scored 83 points in total which included 73 Wazir points. Most of his points came in the form of Dives.
Aniket Pote (Gujarat Giants): He was listed as an Attacker at the start of the season but he showed his all–round mastery in UKK. He showed his ability to perform in both the departments. He played a crucial role for Gujarat Giants and scored 55 points as an Attacker. He also gave his all when it came to defence by spending 15:53 minutes on the mat.
Ramji Kashyap (Chennai Quick Guns) - He was the Most Valuable Player of the tournament and was adjudged as the Player of the Tournament for his stunning show. He was class apart in the attack as well as defence. He was the top Attacker and Defender in the tournament with 108 points and 21:48 minutes of defending on the mat. He is a quality player who played a massive role in taking Chennai Quick Guns to the Playoffs.
Deepak Madhav (Telugu Yoddhas): He was the man who stood tall in the defence for Telugu Yoddhas. He used to make it difficult for the Attackers to score points against him. He was the go-to man for his side when it came to scoring points in the defence. In 12 matches, he spent 20:23 minutes defending on the mat.
Pratik Waikar (Telugu Yoddhas): The All-Rounder played as a captain in most of the matches for Telugu Yoddhas. This didn’t affect his performance as he kept adding value to his side in the chase as well as defence. He made defence look so easy whenever he stepped on the mat as a Defender. He scored 55 points in the attack and his defending time was 20:13 minutes in 12 matches that he played.
Sreejesh S (Mumbai Khiladis): He put up a stellar show for Mumbai Khiladis whether it’s attack or defence. He looked promising for the Khiladis and was one of their most consistent players. In 10 matches that he played, he scored 75 points in the attack and he stayed on the mat for 17:35 minutes as a Defender.
Dilip Khandavi (Odisha Juggernauts) - He did wonders as a Defender for Odisha Juggernauts and played a decisive role in bringing glory to his side. He never looked gassed out while defending and had a not-out percentage of 21%. He looked invincible against any Attacker. With an average stay of 1:43 minutes in every game, he spent 17:13 minutes on the mat.