Their ownership of the Rajasthan Royals Indian Premier League (IPL) team is still under cloud, but Shilpa Shetty and husband Raj Kundra have confirmed their plans to kick-off a football league on the lines of the cricket league. Though they’re not sure when it will materialise.
“Raj is a Britisher and soccer is his first love. A football league at the national level would introduce professionalism into the sport,” says Shilpa, adding that the tournament would offer opportunities to talented and aspiring footballers. The league, says Shilpa is her husband’s idea. “We need better infrastructure to support football in India,” she adds.
IPL Season 3 ended last Sunday. But for the Rajasthan Royals, it ended a week before when they failed to make it to semi-finals. Though Shilpa has cried herself hoarse explaining that she and her husband are indeed the owners of the team, she isn’t willing to reveal more about it.
She, however, does admit that she will miss Rajasthan Captain, Shane Warne, who announced shortly after his team’s last match, that he was exhausted and may not be back now. “It’s heartbreaking to even think about the team without Shane. He’s an able leader, a dear friend now. But if he doesn’t wish to return, I can’t put pressure on him,” says Shilpa.
On her other business venture, the club Royalty, which was launched during the IPL season and has been mired in controversy, Shilpa says, “We’re waiting for permission to come through before we open the club. I don’t want to do anything illegal. It should take a couple of weeks more. We hosted the Royalty launch party in the middle of the IPL season when my team was in Mumbai. I wanted the players to be there.”