Shah Rukh Khan’s Kolkata Knight Riders play their first match here Sunday and the superstar says that his team “are the declared winners”.
Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan said: “Being an actor I have always thought everything in larger-than-life perspective. Knight Riders’ matches will also be no exception. Being a little tongue-in-cheek, at Eden Gardens, we will exhibit two helmets – an 18-carat gold-plated and a diamond studded one respectively to show the other teams that we are the declared winners. The matches are just child’s play for us.’’
“I believe it’s my duty to entertain people whether it’s in films or in the Indian Premier League (IPL) matches. Though I am not going to dance at the gallery, I will be present at Edens.”
According to him, the match will surely be a star-studded affair. “Rani (Mukerji), Bipasha (Basu) and Kareena (Kapoor) have verbally confirmed their presence. With Kareena nowadays we get a Saif Ali Khan for free! So Saif can also be expected. I personally will try to convince John (Abraham) and Karan (Johar) to fly down as well. I have personally invited Rahul and Priyanka Gandhi to come and cheer for us at the Edens,” Shah Rukh said.
King Khan is surely doing his bit, while the people Kolkata have already made their plans for the matches. “We have arranged for a procession from Hatibagan in central Kolkata to the Eden Gardens. Twenty belly dancers will dance their way to the ground on a 16-wheeled container trailer,” said Arnab Roy, joint secretary of the Shah Rukh Khan Fans Club.
Roy said this is the first time in the history of Edens that supporters will enter the grounds with drums and play them at the gallery. “We will also decorate the gallery with Knight Riders flags, banners and festoons. Shah Rukh has promised to help us deck up the gallery,” he added.
Fans and fan clubs of Sourav Ganguly, captain of the Knight Riders, and Shah Rukh have arranged mass screening of all the matches at select places across the city.
Golden-black billboards and posters of the ‘Knights’ – with their faces painted in gold – are evoking much excitement in all Kolkatans irrespective of age.
Ticket sales for the IPL matches began here Monday. And since then, there have been long queues outside the Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) ticket counters every day.
“All the tickets for the first two Knight Riders matches at Edens – on April 20 against Deccan Chargers, and April 29 against Mumbai Indians – are sold out. I am sure tickets for the other five matches will also sell like hot cake once Kolkatans get the taste of the first match at Edens,” said CAB joint secretary Amitabha Bandopadhyay.
Out of the 14 matches of the Kolkata Knight Riders, seven will be played at the Eden Gardens ground here.
The first match of the IPL kicked off Friday with the Knight Riders emerging victorious over the Bangalore Royal Challengers at the Chinnasawmy Stadium in Bangalore.
As the team’s slogan goes, its all about “Korbo, Lorbo, Jeetbo” (Do, Fight, Win) for the “King’s Men”.