When the German fans felt at home! Well, a group of German fans assembled at the Durgam Cheruvu where the FIFA World Cup matches are being screened live on a giant screen in a very relaxed ambience, thanks to the efforts of enterprising Ch. Prasad Reddy.
So, when Germany recorded an emphatic 4-1 win over England in South Africa to enter the quarter-final on Sunday night, this group of fans was seen clearly enjoying the action.
“Honestly, this is the best city I have come across in India. There is so much of warmth and this is the reason why we enjoyed the game tonight,” remarked Tobias Koeppl, a senior official with the Luftansa Airlines and based in the city for the last three years.
The fact that he was at the venue with his entire family including the youngest German fan – his two-and-a-half year old daughter – is also an indicator of their passion for the sport and the patriotic fervour to cheer their national team.
And, there was another gentleman from Germany, Christian Kimmich, doing his Ph.D in Agriculture in India, too in the crowd. “It is a great feeling to watch my national team in action in this beautiful ambience. Forget about that goal denied to England when Frank Lampard's long-ranger landed well inside the goal but was not spotted by the Uruguayan referee even as the team was desperate to level the scores at two-all,” he remarked. “We are really enjoying every bit of this and hope to be here for all the matches featuring Germany,” he said.
Prasad Reddy says that it was originally conceived to screen only German matches because of the demand from the German group but they decided to screen all the other matches also live.
“I have taken this venue on lease and I thought why only cricket why not encourage soccer too and look for a change from the spectators point of view too,” he pointed out.
The venue presented a perfect picture of the fans enjoying the games in the company of their friends. And, probably encouraged by this, the organisers are even planning to screen the Wimbledon semi-finals and final live on the screen which is water-proof.
By all means, simple proof that sports knows barriers especially when it comes the most popular sport in the world – football.