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WWE star Jinder Mahal: I’ve always had a crush on Aishwarya Rai

The WWE wrestler says that even the men in Bollywood — Salman Khan, Akshay Kumar, Hrithik Roshan, Tiger Shroff — have ‘amazing bodies’ and that he thinks Akshay would be great in the ring.

bollywood Updated: Dec 12, 2017 17:48 IST
Aditya Dogra
Aditya Dogra
Hindustan Times
Jinder Mahal,Triple H,WWE
Indo-Canadian professional wrestler Yuvraj Singh Dhesi, known in the ring as Jinder Mahal, on a visit to Delhi.(Photo: Shivam Saxena/HT)

Jinder Mahal is an icon in his own right. While he himself has millions of fans, the Indian-origin WWE wrestler, whose fame in India now rivals that of The Great Khali, has his own star crushes, too, and is a Bollywood buff.

“I had a huge crush on Aishwarya Rai while growing up — I used to love Taal (1999) and I still watch it now and then. Junior Bachchan (Abhishek, the husband of Aishwarya) is a lucky man!” says Jinder. “Even the men are amazing in Bollywood. Hrithik Roshan, Akshay Kumar, Tiger Shroff, and Salman Khan, all have amazing bodies and I respect that. If I ever have to partner with one [of them] for a match, I’d pick Akshay Kumar, because he is really fit and has a martial arts background. He’d be great inside the ring.”

‘I live alone and don’t know how to cook, but I love to gorge [myself] on some roti and chicken curry when I get a chance. Basmati rice is one thing that is part of my diet and I love it’ — Jinder Mahal, wrestler

Talking more about his India connect, Jinder says that he loves healthy Indian food and that despite his strict diet, he always manages to slip in a cheat meal. “I absolutely love daal — it’s so healthy, too. Tandoori chicken is also just spice-based and is an excellent meal,” says the wrestler. “I live alone and don’t know how to cook, but I love to gorge [myself] on some roti and chicken curry when I get a chance. Basmati rice is one thing that is part of my diet and I love it.”

During a recent WWE ‘supershow’ match in Delhi, Jinder was defeated by Triple H, aka The Game. But the former WWE champion has taken a lesson from it and moved on — Jinder says that anything that teaches you can never really be defeat.

“I have the highest respect for Triple H. I’ve grown up watching him in the ring, and always feel that he is out there to take WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment) to new heights. I’ve learned a great deal from the (recent) match, and I know it’ll only push me further. It was a Wrestlemania calibre match,” says Jinder. “I am just very excited to have performed in India. It is the number one [for] fan base, viewership, and social media when it comes to WWE. I was nervous, too, to be honest. But all in all, it was an experience.”

‘I am just very excited to have performed in India. It is the number one [for] fan base, viewership, and social media when it comes to WWE. I was nervous, too, to be honest. But all in all, it was an experience’ — Jinder Mahal, wrestler

Jinder says that he is always careful with the script that his character follows in the ring. “I have a great relationship with Triple H, the writers and the team. If ever a thing comes up that I think could offend, I tell them clearly that we aren’t here to offend. We’re here to put smiles on the audience’s face. I don’t believe in offending a fan base that supports us so much,” he says.

The wrestler adds that India, in his opinion, has the potential to dominate WWE and the world. “India is big right now, and I’m just part of a change. We have Kavita Devi, the first Indian woman in WWE; we have our first Indian in UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) now; Satnam Singh made it to NBA (National Basketball Association, US); and NHL (National Hockey League, North America) has an Indian player, too. You can expect a lot more soon.”

Follow @htshowbiz for more.

First Published: Dec 12, 2017 17:48 IST