Aishwarya Rai Bachchan’s breathtaking moves complemented A R Rahman’s soulful music as the country’s who’s who from various fields got together for football to kick off the second season of Indian Super League (ISL) with a brief opening ceremony in Chennai on Saturday.
Even as the beautiful Aishwarya sparkled by dancing to her hit numbers such as Dola Re Dola, Dhoom Dhoom, the highlight of the evening was music maestro Rahman performing the national anthem at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.
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The 45-minute programme was attended by, among others, Sachin Tendulkar, Rajnikanth, Mukesh and Nita Ambani, besides the Bachchan family.
The initial part of the programme saw a performance by Bansi Kaul’s troop.
Young bollywood actor Alia Bhatt gyrated to some of her hits from movies like Student of the Year, besides performing to the ISL theme song ‘Let’s Football’.
The franchises owners of opening day fixture between Atletico de Kolkata and Chennaiyin FC were called on to the stage and introduced by host Arjun Kapoor, following which Aishwarya entered the scene.
Amitabh Bachchan couldn’t stop clapping as her daughter-in-law performed.
“Together with your support we will make ISL a success,” said Nita Ambani, the inspiration behind the initiative and founder chairperson of Football Sports Development.
Heartthrob Rajnikanth hugging cricket legend and Kerala Blasters’ co-owner Tendulkar and cine star Aishwarya were some of the worthy moments of the show.
The noise level reached a crescendo as two of India’s greatest icons — Rajnikanth and Bachchan — took centre stage in front of 15,000-20,000 people and shared a word or two.
Earlier, after a few hundred kids unfurled the team banners of all the eight outfits of the ISL out on the pitch — choreographed wonderfully, it was Alia’s time.
Alia, with a little help from the Master of Ceremony of the evening, Arjun Kapoor, kicked things off with a brief performance, dancing to some of her famous hits, which included ‘Radha’ and ‘Disco Deewane’ before finishing her performance with the song that has been ringing in all ears for the past couple of months ‘C’mon India, Let’s Football’.
Aishwarya, with her husband Abhishek and father-in-law Amitabh watching from the VIP section, came and danced gracefully, with a Tamil number, particularly, cranking up the decibel level.
However, it was an altogether different ball game when Tendulkar and Rajnikanth entered the stage.
Nita Ambani then declared the second season open.