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T20 Challenge (1)
Well into the first week of the IPL, we've had more than our fair share of thrills and spills - but more off the field than on it.
The Kolkata Knight Riders team has, as usual, been hit by controversy. This time it's the "Fake IPL Player" blog, which pokes fun at Sourav Ganguly, John Buchanan, Shah Rukh Khan and all the happenings around the KKR team, that is the cause for concern.
"We're not bothered by some foolish and inconsequential blog. We're one happy family that trusts each other and gets along," said an impossibly sincere and earnest-looking SRK, even as he supervised workmen who were removing all the Wi-Fi infrastructure from the team dressing room.
Apparently, frantic efforts are being made in the KKR camp to smoke out the mystery blogger from within their ranks - despite the blogger openly referring to himself as "fake" ipl player.
"That's just a double-bluff," said team coach-cum-strategist-cum-tactician-cum-thinker-cum-innovator-cum-Sun-Tzu, John Buchanan. "But I'm not falling for that. I'm not a fool," he added, to a round of suppressed laughter from those nearby, including some KKR players. "Only someone with access to our team dressing room can possibly write with such complete inaccuracy and with so many factual errors. Only an insider can possibly know about such fictitious incidents that certainly did not happen," he signed off, leaving the reporters wishing for once that he was speaking about one of his cockamamie theories instead.
"We will definitely find out who the blogger is - and work out a revenue share with him," said IPL chief Lalit Modi, ever open to income-generation opportunities. "Of course, he will have to pay us a huge licensing fee first, and then share 70% of advertising revenue with the KKR team and the IPL," he said, showing that he doesn't discriminate between random bloggers and international news agencies.
While the rain has come as a dampener for the matches, nobody can accuse the IPL marketing machine of being dull. A toy company has unveiled a brand new range of IPL branded toys, which includes a Lalit Modi piggy bank (which will only return 20% of what you put into it), a Mandira Bedi talking doll (so plasticky and repetitive, it's just like the real thing), and an action figure of Napoleon Einstein (which just sits there and does nothing until you return it to the shop for a full refund).
There is also reportedly an IPL videogame in slated for release, which will not be compatible with any existing PC or console. "We feel that this unique IPL game deserves a whole new custom console to deliver a full-on experience," said a spokesman for the game publishing company. "That, and the fact that people will have to fork out a few hundred dollars more just to play it. Heh Heh," he smirked to himself.
Also, in related news, the South African elections took place last week, but nobody noticed.