World Cup 2019 Diary: Sleepy Southampton wakes up to Ind vs SA frenzy

Updated: Jun 06, 2019, 08:27 IST | Harit N Joshi | Southampton

MS Dhoni's wife Sakshi and daughter Ziva were at the Ageas Bowl here cheering for Team India against South Africa yesterday.

Fans cheer for Team India at Southampton yesterday. Pic/PTI
Fans cheer for Team India at Southampton yesterday. Pic/PTI

The sleepy coastal town here suddenly seemed to have woken up by the frenzy surrounding the India v South Africa World Cup match yesterday. The scene outside the Ageas Bowl was energetic as fans, mostly Indians, thronged the venue to see Kohli & Co in action. One group of fans, who had come in from London, brought along Indian flags to sell and attached interesting slogans to sell their wares. One peppy slogan was, "Dus rupaye ki Pepsi, Kohli hai sexy". For India all-rounder Hardik Pandya, who is a huge hit among Gujaratis here, they chanted: "Ghatia, jalebi, fafda… Hardik Pandya aapda [is ours]". His innovative selling skills ensured Hemal Pathak and his friends sold quite a few flags before they all rushed into the stadium to watch the match.

Sakshi

Sakshi in the stands

MS Dhoni's wife Sakshi and daughter Ziva were at the Ageas Bowl here cheering for Team India against South Africa yesterday. The mother and daughter are staying at a five-star property near the ground though it's not the same hotel where the Indian team have been put up. That's because as per the BCCI's travel policy, the players' wives and family members are not permitted to be with them for the first 20 days of the World Cup so as to avoid any distraction. It may be recalled that skipper Virat Kohli had requested the BCCI to allow the wives of players to accompany them during the World Cup, but the Supreme Court-appointed CoA struck down the request and decided to continue with the travel policy which is in place for all international tournaments.

Also Read: World Cup 2019: India's fanatic supporter Sudhir Gautam's conch shell confiscated

An off-the-Mark toss

THERE was a bit of a gaffe at the toss when presenter Mark Nicholas mistakenly declared Virat Kohli as the winner. The India captain immediately pointed out to the former Hampshire captain that the toss was won by SA skipper Faf du Plessis, who elected to bat in overcast conditions. Interestingly, Kohli said he would have preferred to bowl first anyway.

Punjabi cuisine for India

The Indian team have been here for a week before they played their first World Cup match against SA yesterday. However, their taste buds have been well taken care of with the team management deciding to tie up with a local Punjabi restaurant, Sanjha that serves authentic Indian food. The hotel is also situated within the stadium premises which makes it a convenient option to cater to the Indian players.

Also Read: World Cup 2019: Yuzvendra Chahal... verve and vigour

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