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Rajasthan Royals have a new team member. No, they’ve not brought in an injury replacement, nor has Shane Warne unearthed another obscure talent and signed him up. The latest addition to the team is about a foot tall, wears pink and comes with a commemorative cap – her name’s Pinky and the plastic doll is Warne’s latest motivational tool – or an innovation to keep his team-mates on their toes. The punishment for anyone breaking a team rule – coming late for a team meeting, for example – is Pinky and a cap with the words ‘you banana’ splashed across the front. The offender then has to wear the cap and carry the doll with him – all the while following “doll rules” – at all times, be it at the ground, on the team bus or on a flight between games, until someone else goofs up.
Ross Taylor was the first to take charge of Pinky, and has been followed by Shaun Tait, Johan Botha and Warne himself. It’s not all bad news, though: Botha took charge of Pinky after refusing to participate in the team’s ‘dancing activities’ but churned out a Man-of-the-Match winning performance against Mumbai Indians while in possession of her. Not enough to convince his team-mate Amit Singh: “I’ve been lucky that I haven’t got Pinky,” he told Mumbai Mirror. “And I don’t want to commit mistakes.”
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