India vs Aus semi-final: Unofficial holiday for cricket buffs in Mumbai

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Mumbai
  • Updated: Mar 25, 2015 21:54 IST

For many working professionals in Mumbai, Thursday will be an unofficial no-work day. Sanjeev Bagayatkar, a banker, has decided to carry his tablet to work, to enjoy an uninterrupted telecast of the ICC World Cup semi-final match between India and Australia that begins at 9am.

“The month-end is the busiest time for bankers, and I can’t afford a leave. But, as long as the match lasts, there is going to be little work done in office,” Bagayatkar said.

Many said they began to make plans for Thursday’s mega match ever since Australia beat Pakistan in Adelaide by six wickets and booked its place in the semi-final against India. Uday Salian, partner in an Andheri-based project management consultancy, will watch the first half of the match in office along with his team, and then head to a club for the second half.

“We will finish off all important work in the morning, but follow the match. The second half is crucial, and for that, I am taking my team out,” he said.

Salian, in fact, is so confident of India’s victory that he has already made elaborate arrangements for post-match celebrations at the club. “With so many Indians praying for our victory, I don’t think the opposite can happen,” he said.

Salian, who is also the trustee of Andhericha Raja Ganpati Mandal, will hold a screening of the World Cup final on March 26 at the mandal stage. “Around 150 people will be able to enjoy it at the venue,” he said.

While clubs and restaurants are already wooing customers with LCDs screening the semi-final, housing societies are making their own arrangements. Mihar Apartments in Kandivli (West) has installed a giant screen. “Around 18 flat residents, along with other locals, will be able to watch the game together,” said society chairperson, Mahendra Sharma.

Game on at IIT-B
Devansh Chawla, a student of IIT-Bombay, said hardly anyone out of 2,000 students in the 16 hostels will attend lectures on Thursday. “We will be hooked to TV sets in the common rooms. Hardly anyone will be in classrooms,” he said. The sports council of IIT-B plans to screen the final match at the convocation hall.

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