Super Sunday: Full house for boxing at Talkatora
Dressed in his best, 30-year-old Rajpal Singh from Bhiwani stood before the ticket booth next to the Talkatora Indoor Stadium looking for 10 tickets to the power packed boxing match inside.delhi Updated: Oct 11, 2010 00:18 IST
Dressed in his best, 30-year-old Rajpal Singh from Bhiwani stood before the ticket booth next to the Talkatora Indoor Stadium looking for 10 tickets to the power packed boxing match inside.
He didn't get the tickets, and the long drive to Delhi in a hired jeep from the Haryana small town that he and his friends went through on Sunday was pointless. He was angry.
"We tried booking on the Internet, but couldn't because the website was not working,” said the amateur boxer who idolises India's ace boxer Vijender Singh — a fellow Haryana boy.
"We thought we would reach the stadium early and get the tickets, but they are saying all the tickets have been booked."
Jats from Haryana, India's boxing Capital, thronged the Talkatora stadium in hordes on Sunday to support the India contingent, mostly consisting of boxers from their state.
Not all got tickets, and were willing to buy in black.
"We are willing to pay R1,000 for a R250 ticket. Can you help?" asked Karan Kumar, who had traveled overnight to Delhi from Karnal in a group of 12 — all tall and burly men in their twenties — but needed only two tickets because the rest of the gang had arranged their tickets back home.
"Only two of us are left behind now."
The atmosphere at the Talkatora stadium, both inside and outside, was no less than that of a carnival as Delhiites turned out in their Sunday best to the event that also saw star boxer Vijender Singh landing a knockout punch square on his Kenyan opponent and finishing the match prematurely.
"We would've loved a longer match. But it's ok, we've enjoyed watching boxing since morning," said Priya Saini, an executive with Google in Gurgaon.
Foods were sold out during the afternoon session, and the absence of a merchandising stall was a big disappointment for many.
"We wanted to buy vuvuzelas and some other CWG items. But the stadiums are so bare, nothing is available," said Sunil Kumar, a Connaught Place retailer, enjoying an off day since Connaught Place was shut for the day for the cycling event.
"The Games have successfully got us interested in these sports. Hope we keep up the interest long after the Games are over."