Holders Bangladesh emerged Group A champions in the Bangabandhu Cup'2023 International Kabaddi Tournament with all-win record beating Iraq by 49-33 point at the Shaheed Noor Hossain Volleyball Stadium here on Saturday.
Bangladesh led the first half by 28-13 point.
With the day's feat, Bangladesh made it five in five to clinch the top slot of Group A securing full 10 points from straight five matches and will play Group B runners up in the first semifinal at 4pm on Monday.
Formidable Iraq took the court on Saturday afternoon with three back to back wins, but conceded their first defeat in the meet against last two times champions hosts Bangladesh.
However, they still in the semifinal race from Group B securing six points from four matches and will play England in the remaining Group B match on Sunday to assure the semifinal berth.
In the day's vital match, Bangladesh had a slow start but gradually regained the rhythm with overall teamwork.
.The first five minutes saw some neck to neck duels but Bangladesh inflicted the first Lona (all out) in the sixth minute.
Experienced raider Arduzzaman initiated efficient attacks while Tuhin Tarafder and Mizanur Rahman was witty in their raids.
Iraq skipper Sabir Aloi Sari made some headache for Bangladesh defence with his height and long limbed kicks.
In the 16th minute, Bangladesh was reduced to three against Iraq’s seven. But a super raid of Mizanur Rahman saw three Iraqi players out and three Bangladesh players back into the court.
After the change of ends, Bangladesh concentrated upon maintaining the lead with cautious approach. Iraq tried hard but failed to overcome the tactical net of the hosts.
Tuhin Tarafder and Arduzzaman both scored nine points each but Tuhin was grabbed the glittering trophy and the purse of BDT 10000 allocated for the Man of the Match.
In the day's other match, Chinese Taipei took a solo lead in the Group B of the Tournament beating all losers Malaysia by 79-34 point at the same venue on Saturday.
Chen Chi Chih Chang was adjudged Man of the Match.
With the day's well merited victory, Chinese Taipei completed their Group B campaign in the top slot securing eight points from all the five group encounters.
But, the Chinese Taipei still have to wait for their semifinal slot as Sri Lanka and Thailand both also have six points and one match to play.