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Cricket cheers at Bengalur pub and bar

the IPL generated a lot of excitement as people, now shaken off their fears of the deadly coronavirus, enjoy the biting finishes. Even though all matches are played in Maharashtra, loyal supporters of Bangalore Royal Challengers don’t miss the action. They swarm in pubs that offer them the stadium experience with special arrangements.

During the Covid pandemic, sources say, over 300 pubs have been closed and 500 in Bangalore are in dire straits. Despite the gloom, pub managements have invested this time in attracting fans and they are getting a good response.

Prathik Shetty, owner of the ‘Reservoir’ pub in Koramangala of Bengaluru, told IANS, “We try our best to give a stadium feel to the cricket fans so that they don’t miss going to the stadium.”

He explains that large screens have been installed and a special menu has been prepared. “We will donate whatever is possible, such as props to celebrate fours and sixes. We want to give a better atmosphere,” he says.

Talking about the excitement, Prathik said special menu is prepared and cocktails and decorations are made with jerseys, flags to give stadium feeling. “Spectators have not been allowed in the stadium for two years. There was no opportunity for people to sit down and enjoy the IPL matches. Now here is an opportunity for fans to support their team and also support our industry which has been hit hard over the past two years,” he said.

Pub owners are skeptical of weekday matches. They maintain, however, that there would be a lot of excitement during the BCR games and they will have to see when the other teams are playing at the weekend. Last year’s IPL was split, in the first wave pubs were not allowed to open. During the second wave, pubs were allowed at 50% capacity. B. Govindaraja Hegde, Secretary General of the Federation of Karnataka State Liquor Vendorssaid that 80% of the bars are decorated and provide facilities to enjoy IPL matches and the business is now growing.