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Overzealous fans give security a bypass

The stringent security measures adopted for the Jaipur ODI two days ago were unnecessary. At least, that’s the feeling one got in Gwalior.

cricket Updated: Feb 24, 2010 00:21 IST
Subhash Rajta

The stringent security measures adopted for the Jaipur ODI two days ago were unnecessary. At least, that’s the feeling one got in Gwalior.

While no unauthorised person was allowed to go near the players in Jaipur, it was a virtually free for all on Tuesday evening during the teams’ net session.

Even as hundreds of policemen stood guard along the boundary ropes, a crowd, made up of women and children, emerged from nowhere and converged on the players for autographs. While a majority of the policemen remained mute spectators to the happening, a few of them even led some of the kids, apparently hailing from well-connected families, to the players.

The situation went from bad to worse as several autograph hunters sauntered in, wanting to get a close look at the players in the nets. A few adventurous ones even walked up to the players and it took India coach, Gary Kirsten, to shoo them away.

A couple of South Africa players, who were jogging along the boundary ropes, gave up when they could not weave their way through the growing crowd.

Meanwhile, Dhoni, acting on request, emerged twice from the session to oblige autograph seekers. Once, he was taken to the stands to have a word with school children. “These kids have been brought in after seeking permission from the police,” said someone.

Dhoni tried to laugh off the matter when asked about the intrusion. “There couldn’t have been more policemen at the ground,” he said.

Match referee, Andy Pycroft, however, seemed to have taken note of the incident and was seen clicking pictures of the intrusion.