Now, you can eat cricket, sleep cricket and even bathe cricket! With less than 40 days to go for the 2011 ICC World Cup, cricket fever is fast gripping the nation. Markets across the Capital have been flooded with cricket merchandise — caps, tees, toys, mugs, posters, and even towels and helmets!
Official World Cup merchandise, which was recently launched at a fashion show featuring cricketers and Bollywood actor Asin, is available at Big Bazaar stores. Besides a range of Stumpy toys (the official World Cup mascot), the line includes T-shirts with the World Cup logo, those with graphic cricket designs and even bed and bath linen. "We have created bath and gym towels and hand towels, too. Within four-five days of the launch, we saw a phenomenal response," says Sanjeev Agrawal of the store chain.
Besides official merchandise, local stores are also rolling out quirky cricket gear. T-shirt brand Tantra has a range of cricket tees that has been flying off the shelves in the past week. "Our tees have funny messages about cricket, and are very popular right now," says Ranjiv Ramchandani of the brand.
Lifestyle chain Happily Unmarried has also launched a series of World Cup-themed stuff. "We have mugs, calendars and cricket posters, apart from T-shirts. There are posters that say things like '10 reasons why cricket is better than your girlfriend’, and we also have products that make fun of the fans," says Rajat Tuli of the store.
If that’s not enough, there’s also personalised merchandise. “Many people get faces of their favourite player painted on tees, helmets, cigarette lighters and even visiting card holders,” says Rohit Kant, who specialises in creating customised fashion products. "MS Dhoni is the most popular among girls. They even get his face painted on bags and accessories," he says.
It doesn’t cost a bomb
Unlike branded team jerseys, most of the funky World Cup merchandise is affordable. The official merchandise starts at Rs 199 (for T-shirts) and Rs 245 (for a small stuffed toy version of Stumpy, the World Cup mascot).
Posters, available at Happily Unmarried, cost Rs 200, while the mugs range from Rs 190 to Rs 250. Tantra T-shirts with cricket slogans and quotes cost Rs 345.