The cheerleaders got hit again. This time literally.
On Sunday, during the table-topping clash between Jaipur and Chennai, cheerleaders of the Jaipur team were at the receiving end of plastic bottles and some "nasty, acerbic" remarks hurled at them perpetually from the Sawai Man Singh stadium's East Stand.
The quartet stormed off the field after one struck a member of the troupe on her leg. IPL Chief commissioner Lalit Modi, already concerned about the endless controversies in the IPL, had to step in and reassure them before they resumed performing, it was learnt. After staying away for an hour, the cheerleaders returned for the last half an hour of the contest.
While the dancing belles have attracted the ire of the moralists and some members of the Parliament, this is the first instance of them being hit by fans.
Lewd looks and remarks aside, security of the women is what confronts Rajasthan Cricket Association and the franchise, Emerging Media now. Stand E seats roughly 6000 and is the domain of the cheapest Rs 100 tickets.
Even the Indian Cricket League, which finished early April, had seen a performing artist facing a lot of heat. The artist on stage had to be taken away under heavy escort after the Gurgaon crowd invaded the area around the stage. The scheduled finals at the venue were subsequently moved to Hyderabad on account of the incident.
The bigger issue that arises is as to how IPL organisers intend avoiding similar situations in the future. The RCA is contemplating erecting a bigger barricade behind the performers, an executive member of the body revealed.