Adelaide Oval turns into 'Sea of Blue'

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Adelaide, Feb 15: Adelaide Oval was 'under virtual siege' as Indian fans took complete control of the city outnumbering their Pakistani counterparts in the marquee clash between the arch-rivals in the ICC Cricket World Cup today.

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While the number of Indian fans descending in the coastal town swelled close to 25,000 and the locals made the number increase to 30,000 at the 53,500 capacity stadium today.

Cricket fans at Adelaide Oval

The green jerseys of the Pakistani fans looked like dots in an 'Ocean of Blue' with 'Sir Donald Bradman Pavilion' stand completely dominated by the Indians.

It was party time for all Indian fans as they gathered at famous Hindley Street in heart of the city on the ve of the high-voltage clash. The local 'Fringe Festival' and the colourful Indians made it a night to remember as the crowd celebrated late into the night.

It was no different today morning as one entered the 'War Memorial Drive' in-front of the Adelaide Oval. You could mistake it for Eden Gardens or Wankhede Stadium as Indian fans sang the hit Bollywood song "Dil diya hain jaan bhi denge aye watan tere liye".

From popular songs to India's sports anthem "Chak De India" came blaring out of loudspeakers everywhere. But the heartening fact was the bonhomie between the fans as they greeted each other with open arms.

While the decibel level of 'Vande Mataram' certainly overpowered the 'Pakistan Zindabad' chants, the fans did enjoy each others' company gleefully, clicking away selfies.

While the Australian locals, in general, didn't warm-up to the occasion but the media did play its part as a local tabloid 'Sunday Mail' which had 'Swagatam' printed in hindi on the front page and 'Khushamadi' printed in Urdu on the back page.

If there were 22 out there in the middle battling for supremacy, there were at least five in the commentator's box which could easily be termed as 'Reserve World XI'.

There was class of Sunil Gavaskar, complemented by the dogged Geoffrey Boycott, the elegant Sourav Ganguly in the middle-order. There was 'Sultan of Swing' Wasim Akram and speed merchant Brett Lee not to forget the ever-colourful Shane Warne.

Boycott for a fact wasn't exactly amused to find naans and dal makhni being served for lunch. "Looks like its only for the Indians," Boycott said as he settled for some roasted lamb alongside Gavaskar.

PTI 

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