Hyderabad crowd cheers for Mumbai Indians

May 19th, 2008 - 8:28 am ICT by admin  

Hyderabad, May 18 (IANS) Deccan Chargers may be out of the semifinal race but the crowd at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium here enjoyed every bit of their clash against Mumbai Indians Sunday evening. The 40,000 capacity stadium was nearly full as many spectators turned up to watch Sachin Tendulkar. Disappointed with the performance of the home team, which is still looking for the first win on the home ground, the spectators cheered for the little master.

Hyderabad Cricket Association (HCA) officials said the tickets were booked much in advance, even before the Chargers made an early exit.

While the fans were eager to see Tendulkar in action, it was Sanath Jayasuriya who hogged the limelight at least in first two overs. He did not last long but two overs were enough for him to show why he is still considered one of the most dangerous batsmen.

The crowd cheered him when he hammered Vijaykumar and Zoysa all over the ground. He lasted only 15 balls but hit two huge sixes and six fours much to the delight of the holiday crowd.

It was disappointment for Tendulkar’s fans as he also had an early exit. However, it was time for Chargers’ fans to cheer. The stadium erupted when Shahid Afridi picked up two wickets in one over including that of the Mumbai captain.

Those cheering for the hosts included tennis sensation Sania Mirza. Accompanied by her parents, she was seen enjoying the game.

Tight security was in place for the match in view of the red alert sounded in the city in the wake of last week’s serial bomb blasts in Jaipur and the first anniversary of the bomb blast at the historic Mecca Masjid.

Nine people were killed in the blast during Friday prayers at the 17th century mosque on this day last year. Five more people died in the subsequent police firing on a mob near the mosque.

Additional security arrangements were made in and around the stadium. The spectators were not allowed to carry cell phones, cameras, tiffin boxes, containers and hand bags. The police also prevented them from carrying water bottles, binoculars, trumpets and musical gadgets.

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