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Akshay Kumar hits the pitch with crew

Everyone knows that Akshay Kumar is a fitness and sports freak. So when Rowdy Rathore’s last schedule in Hubli, Karnataka kicked off, the actor devised a novel idea to amuse himself — playing a game of cricket.

bollywood Updated: Jan 30, 2012 20:47 IST
Prashant Singh
Rowdy Rathore

Produced-by-Sanjay-Leela-Bhansali-and-directed-by-Prabhu-Deva-Rowdy-Rathore-features-Akshay-Kumar-in-a-double-role-opposite-Sonakshi-Sinha-It-is-the-remake-of-Telugu-film-Vikramarkudu

Everyone knows that Akshay Kumar is a fitness and sports freak. So when Rowdy Rathore’s last schedule in Hubli, Karnataka kicked off, the actor devised a novel idea to amuse himself — playing a game of cricket.

“Yes, it was Akshay’s idea to have two teams — Chennai Tigers (consisting of Chennai stunt team) and Mumbai Tigers (with all the crew from Mumbai including assistant directors),” says film’s co-producer Shabina Khan, adding they have already played three-four matches in a ‘best of three’ format. These daily matches begin in the night after pack-up. In fact, Akshay and the crew have even arranged for special floodlights for the matches. “There is an open field next to the sets, which Akshay has turned into a stadium of sorts. Since they start shooting early in the morning and pack up by seven in the evening, cricket is the major source of entertainment,” says a unit hand.

For the uninitiated, Akshay is also currently recovering from a shoulder injury, for which he had undergone treatment in Germany. “But being a complete professional, he didn’t cancel the schedule and landed straight in Hubli from Germany. And right now, he is completing all his action sequences,” says the source.

“Earlier, in this small village of Badami, there would be nothing to do after we’d wrap up shootings. Now we all look forward to playing cricket everyday ” says Shabina, adding, “Also, initially the girls in team would just watch the boys play, but now they too join the game and enjoy themselves,” says Shabina.

She says the game has also been a stress-buster for the crew. “It’s been a long schedule for us. We have shot for around 20 days with another 14-15 days to go. So, if we didn’t have cricket to play, the team would have been really bored, So thanks to Akki, we can combine work with fun,” she says. Actor-filmmaker Prabhudeva is directing Rowdy Rathore, while Sanjay Leela Bhansali and Shabina are producing it. The film also stars Sonakshi Sinha opposite Akshay.