Nothing seems to go right for Bangalore and its franchisee Banga Beats in the Vodafone Indian Badminton League.
Poor attendance — compared to the opening day when two outstation teams were playing — is not a good sign for the home team. And a delayed start to Sunday’s proceedings did not help with the sparse crowd getting increasingly impatient. Twice the announcer went on air to say there was a technical issue, but the crowd would not buy it. But, all was soon forgotten as soon as the players stepped on to the court, almost 28 minutes late.
The delay apparently was due to Banga Beats making late replacements to their second men’s singles player, bringing in Jan O. Jorgensen for Hu Yun, who despite his high world ranking has had a poor run thus far. A compromise of sort was reached with Arvind Bhat, a former national champion and local hero, being fielded instead.
And then the crowd got a glimpse of the ‘Wall’, Rahul Dravid, in the VIP enclosure, and everybody’s attention switched to the batting maestro.
On the crowd front, the IBL website said the tickets were “sold out'”, but going by the turnout the crowd seemed to have stayed off. Banga Beats’ poor showing in previous matches could obviously be the reason.