One more cheerleaders row that happened in India-Sri Lanka series. The newspaper quote I liked comparing Cheerleaders with frescoes featuring topless women.
Sri Lanka’s cricket authorities have dumped a team of eastern European cheerleaders from the one-day series against India after locals protested over the scantily-clad women at Dambulla International Stadium. Cultural Minister Yapa Abeywardena said: “It is not in keeping with our tradition,” he said. “I have asked the cricket board to drop this item immediately.” In keeping with our tradition? Clearly that tradition has nothing to do with the fifth-century Sigiriya rock fortress, a World Heritage site near the ground known for its frescoes of bare-chested women.
Cheerleaders in cricket is very recent as far as I know . The first time I noticed them is with Twenty20 world cup hosted in South Africa where the music and dance added the glamor to short version of cricket. IPL continued that tradition amidst the protests in India during the May’2008 IPL matches. Some controversies too that media enjoyed when one popular Bollywood actor -Emran Hashmi- to promote his “match fixing” movie –Jannat– kissed one of the cheerleaders from Deccan Chargers team during the match between Deccan Chargers and Kings XI Punjab.
This is just the start of controversies around Cheerleaders in cricket — a clash of culture happening with the gentleman’s game.