In the spotlight

Sachin Tendulkar’s decision to quit Mumbai Indians’ captaincy didn’t just stump his team mates but also forced IPL organisers to rework the script of the opening ceremony

Written by G.S. Vivek | Published: April 4, 2012 1:12:39 am

Sachin’s decision forces a change in the script

Sachin Tendulkar’s decision to quit Mumbai Indians’ captaincy didn’t just stump his team mates but also forced IPL organisers to rework the script of the opening ceremony. The poem written by Prasoon Joshi for the IPL and recited by Amitabh Bachchan was supposed to include a stanza on his captaincy. An A-V had also been prepared on Tendulkar but with the last-minute change of plans and Tendulkar not expected to attend,the organisers had to modify both the poem and the ceremony.

Ahead of serious business Dhoni reveals funny bone

MS Dhoni launched Chennai Super Kings merchandise,one of which said ‘Proud back-to-back IPL champions.’ But if CSK don’t complete a hat-trick of titles,blame it on him. Replying to a question on growing his hair long again despite the fact that he had a short crop the last two times,the skipper said,“It’s not about the hair,it’s about the team. Changes are for good and I thought the buzzed look would work fine,so I started growing my hair again. Definitely the short crop helped me in battling the heat,” he said before stopping amidst peals of laughter.

Dhoni has been trying to learn some Tamil and was close to perfecting the whistle podu song — the anthem of Chennai Super Kings. On Tuesday,he watched the franchise unveil their new anthem — ‘Raise your Hands’. Though he loved the new video and the concept,Dhoni admitted that “whistle podu will always remain my favourite.”

Mumbai Indians have a made-in-India look

While Pune Warriors have been at loggerheads with the IPL governing council for playing an extra foreigner to make up for a marquee Indian player,Mumbai has no such problems. With seven Team India players in its ranks,their playing XI takes care of itself. Sachin Tendulkar,Harbhajan Singh,Munaf Patel,RP Singh,Rohit Sharma,Pragyan Ojha,Dinesh Karthik — along with four international players — complete the line-up. The ‘Indians’ in their name never felt so apt before. Though,that leaves the likes of Dhaval Kulkarni,Ambati Rayadu,T Suman and Suryakumar Yadav wondering if they will get a game in the tournament.

Katy’s last act a damp squib

“Katy who,” joked Jonty Rhodes when emcee Gaurav Kapur asked him about Katy Perry. The singer was chosen for the grand finale of the opening night but apart from Aiden Blizzard,who sang a line from her album,and Doug Bollinger,who went onstage to teach her cricket,there weren’t too many takers for the act. The opening night was high on star power but low on quality. First lesson for the organisers this season: keep things short and sweet.

Bollywood tops Tollywood

It was Chennai and one expected kolaveri di — the song that has gone viral across the nation. But except for Prabhudeva,it was all about Bollywood power on display,leaving Kareena Kapoor,MS Dhoni and Priyanka Chopra to stutter a few Tamil words to woo the crowd. It was finally up to Dinesh Karthik,local hero but playing for Mumbai Indians against the CSK on Wednesday night,to request support for his team in Tamil. What he got was jeers. Not even one of their own can force a passionate CSK fan to switch loyalties.

Salman but no SRK

In this city,larger-than-life cutouts are de riguer. Salman Khan walked in with one of his cutouts. Amitabh Bachchan had his set of admirers among the team skippers on the front row,Salman had his share of fans in the Mumbai and Chennai teams. Conspicuous by his absence was the other Khan — Shahrukh,co-owner of KKR. But then,didn’t they say you can get only one of the two Khans at a time?

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