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World Cup fever grips Kerala

Written by: Staff
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Kozhikode, June 5 (UNI) With three days to go for the World Cup in Germany, soccer-crazy districts of Kozhikode and Malappuram are in the grip of Samba fever as they get ready to support the defending champions.

Go to any tea shop or dhaba even at the remote Malappuram District, the conversations are dominated by football and fans' favourites Ronaldo and Ronaldinho appear in cut outs and large posters in different parts of the district.

'Flexi boards' showcasing the Brazilians can be seen in every nook and corner of the district, which had been preparing itself to become a part of the football mania about a month ago.

The other local favourites include Argentina, France, Italy and England and shops selling their flags and apparel doing brisk business.

Die-hard football fans are organising matches expressing loyalty to their favourite teams.

Clubs and associations have also readied themselves for the big event. They have also started giving identity cards for the members, which would prevent them from switching sides.

''Such enthusiasm has not been witnessed even during the recent neck and neck Assembly elections,'' said a club member.

The scenario is not much different in Kozhikode with many flexi boards, depicting prominent teams in action, coming up in street corners, beach and even in remote areas.

Such boards can be seen in coastal areas such as Mukhadar, Vellayil, Kuttichira, Cherootty Road, Valiyangadi, Kallai, Tiruvannur, Panniyankara, Meenchanda, Mathara and many other places.

''Can Argentine lads win over Brazilian tiger cubs? quite impossible,'' reads a board at Mathara in the district.

Many shops in the city are selling T-shirts carrying numbers of well-known players.

Electronics shops, offering special rebate on television sets, are doing brisk business in the city.

Reports of people betting and tonsuring their heads to prepare for the mega event are also common in these districts.

UNI PCH GM PM PM1813

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