September 28, 2011

Offbeat

Jonty's in the house

Dustin Silgardo

If cricket purists raise their eyebrows at South African players entering England squads, they’re probably shaving them off at the thought of Jonty Rhodes, one of South Africa’s biggest post-Apartheid sporting heroes, entering the Bigg Boss house in India. Bigg Boss is India’s version of the reality show Big Brother, and places a group of celebrities in a house where they live for a certain number of days with no connection to the outside world. The guests are largely Indian but in recent times the producers have tried to include foreign celebrities with the actress Pamela Anderson spending three days in the house last season.

This season Rhodes could be joined in the house by Colombian pop star Shakira and boxer Mike Tyson – and, closer home, by former India cricketer Navjot Singh Sidhu, whose end-career fielding earned him the nickname Jonty Singh. “I am sure that we two reasonable fielders will gel just fine on the show,” Rhodes joked in an interview with the Hindustan Times. He is one of the few characters left in the game of cricket, either on or off the field, so it should be an entertaining time.” Rhodes, currently in India with the Mumbai Indians for the Champions League Twenty20, said he hoped to learn Hindi during his stint in the Bigg Brother house. There’s no confirmation yet, though, on how long Rhodes will spend in the house or what tasks he will be made to perform – Pamela Anderson had to learn to dance to a Bollywood song.

Dustin Silgardo is a former sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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