It hasn?t even begun yet and controversies are galore. The seventh edition of the Indian Premiere League (IPL 2014) starts on April 16, 2014, with defending champions Mumbai Indians taking on Shah Rukh Khan?s Kolkata Knight Riders at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi. The tournament will be back home on May 2, with Chennai Super Kings playing the Knight Riders at CSK?s captain cool MS Dhoni?s home ground Ranchi.
The Board for Control of Cricket in India (BCCI) and the IPL governing committee have been battling repeated roadblocks. To begin with, the board president N Srinivasan, CSK official Gurunath Meiyappan and Rajasthan Royals? (RR) owner Raj Kundra came under the cloud of betting and match fixing. Before that even died down, the government announced that it would not be able to provide any security for the tournament due to the general elections and subsequent counting of votes and declaration in India. The committee then decided to move the initial phase of the tournament to the UAE. Just when IPL fans thought the worst was over, the Supreme Court indicated that until the match fixing issue was completely resolved, CSK and RR should not be allowed to participate in the IPL. That was averted and both key teams will play IPL 7. The Supreme Court?s suggestion to make former Indian great Sunil Gavaskar the interim board president for all matters concerning the IPL has been welcomed by fans as well.
While a lot of fans prefer watching the IPL in a pub or bar that is screening the matches live, this time around ? with the first phase being held in the UAE ? it is easy to assume that more people will head to nightlife establishments to absorb the tension, excitement and euphoria of the IPL. Establishments in Mumbai also choose to stay with the trend and alter their interiors with cricketing memorabilia, rename their drinks to things that sound like a cricket stroke or cricketing jargon and encourage their guests to cheer and support their favourite IPL teams.
Here is a list of establishments in Mumbai that will be screening IPL 7 matches live:
A nautical-themed pub where models of ships adorn the booths and a skipper?s wheel is placed near the bar. The fact that they are screening IPL matches this season comes as little surprise since the captain of a cricket team is also called ?skipper?.
Hotel Marine Plaza
Geoffrey?s has always been the ultimate place to unwind and relax after a busy day. It also makes for the perfect place to enjoy your favourite sporting encounter being screened.
Manchester United Café Bar
Great smoky appetisers, combo meals and drinks. While this is usually the hotspot to catch live football action, when it?s IPL time, all eyes are on the big screens playing live matches with fans lapping up the action.
Biryani, booze, batsmen and bowlers. Perfect combination isn?t it?
Located in several parts of Mumbai, this colourful and lively restaurant brightens up a few shades more during the IPL.
Eastern Express Highway (EEH) and Film City Road (FCR)
Ph: 2540-6689 (EEH) and 2840-0208 (FCR)
Great ambience and quick service to ensure that the spirits keep flowing during the IPL.
Smaash is known for being a sports-centric, immersive and interactive entertainment centre with large bar selection. The perfect combination to enjoy the IPL. If your favourite team is not performing well, you can step into the bowling arena to blow off some steam.
Sun N Sand Hotel
A great view of the Mumbai sea and a swimming pool complements the innovative cocktail menu designed by international mixologist DreMasso. Be adventurous with your choice of cocktails, irrespective of your favourite players? performance.
Great finger food and a list of liquor, longer than your favourite team?s line-up!