| Customers purchase IPL T-shirts from a sports shop at Police Lines Colony in Patna on Saturday. Picture by Jai Prakash |
Patna, April 9: The world might still be coming to terms with Team India’s triumph, but the Bihar capital is already in the grip of Indian Premier League (IPL) fever.
Shops selling IPL T-shirts and caps are doing roaring business. The demand for Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) jerseys is the highest and budding cricketers and schoolchildren form bulk of the customers. The shop owner claimed that the craze for KKR T-shirts had reached a frenzy owing to Shahrukh Khan’s charm.
Ramesh Kumar, a sports shop owner at Police Lines Colony, said: “KKR T-shirts are in high demand even though they are more expensive than those of other IPL teams like Rajasthan Royals, Kings IX Punjab or Mumbai Indians. The cost of IPL T-shirts range between Rs 125 and Rs 200 and caps are available in the price range of Rs 50 and Rs 80, the most expensive being the Shahrukh Khan IPL T-shirt. The Indian Premier League (IPL) has caught the imagination of viewers across India having played in our country itself unlike previous years which has gone overseas, now the craze for IPL has doubled.”
He added: “The IPL T-shirts of new teams like Pune Warriors and Kochi Tuskers Kerala are not available in the market, as the teams are new and people are not much familiar with them. Anybody coming to my shop is asking for KKR T-shirt. The high demand has forced us to order the manufacturers to deliver more KKR T-shirts. Mostly college goers and schoolchildren are coming to buy the T-shirts.”
Commenting on the sale of IPL T-shirts, Anand Kumar, a budding cricketer and a resident of Lodipur, said: “The Shah Rukh Khan team T-shirt is more attractive and fancy, especially the golden colour which adds more glitz to it. The KKR team lost yesterday but I still support them because I like Shahrukh Khan.”
Another IPL fan, Rakesh Kumar, said: “I like IPL matches more because you don’t need to support any particular team, every IPL game is entertaining and full of energy, it does not matter who loses or wins the game. What matters is the who hits more sixes and fours in the match.”
Talking on the timing of the IPL matches, Santosh Kumar, a resident of Police Lines Colony, said: “The best thing about IPL is that it does not clash with school timings because most matches are played after 4pm and by that time, I am back from the school and can watch the entire match. I like wearing the Chennai Super Kings T-shirt because I love the yellow colour.” Even caps, wristbands and other accessories related to IPL are in high demand.
However, the hotels, restaurants and clubs have not made any special arrangement for IPL at present, claiming to do it after a few matches. Aftab Alam, the restaurant manager at Hotel Chanakya, said: “We will screen IPL matches on big screens and projectors everyday. We will make special arrangements for the main qualifying games. Once the quarter-finals begin, we plan to start an IPL contest too in the restaurant.”