The curious case of Cheerleaders
When the concept of Cheerleaders was introduced in cricket during the first edition of the IPL in 2008, everyone, from cricket fans to the media, were curious about how the merger would work.
Some believed the new twist was added to garner more eyeballs, while others were critical of it. But, whatever be the case, the Cheerleaders have thrived on the cricket field, entertaining the crowds with their moves like never before.
They are there again at the third edition of the IPL, which kicked-off flast week where in a thrilling encounter.
Here they perform during defending champions Deccan Chargers' match against Kolkata Knight Riders. The Chargers lost by 11 runs.
Image: Cheerleaders perform during the IPL match between the Kolkata Knight Riders and Deccan Chargers
Photographs: Getty Images
Fans add to the frenzy
The presence of Cheerleaders may have been introduced to try and boost TRPs, but if the IPL is a success, it's mainly because of the support recieved from fans. Cricket-crazy fans have been packing stadiums to capacity.
The carnival-like atmostphere created by fans has seemed to have rubbed off on the players, who are dishing out top-class cricket.
Most of the matches thus far have had nail-biting finishes, and one that fit the bill perfectly was the match between Delhi Daredevils and Kings XI Punjab.
Image: Fans cheer during the match between Kings XI Punjab and the Delhi Daredevils
Cheerleaders keep the fans involved
The IPL is all about pomp and show. From filmstars to business tycoons, everyone comes to cheer their favourite team.
Cheerleaders add to that glamour factor with their energetic dance moves. They get into the groove, move to the beat of the DJs music when a bowler gets punished to the boundary.
Image: Cheerleaders strut their stuff during a match between the Mumbai Indians and Rajasthan Royals
Cricket plus dance equals entertainment
Looking at cricket from a purely entertainment point of view, the Cheerleaders have injected just the right dose of entertainment into the series.
And, talking of entertainment, the Cheerleaders were perhaps at their best during the Mumbai Indians and Rajasthan Royals match.
Image: Cheerleaders perform during match between the Kings XI Punjab and the Delhi Daredevils
Of Mascots and wrist bands
This year's IPL has seen the franchisees come up with innovative ideas to popularise their teams.
The jerseys have become a hot buy with the crowds. While some teams are distributing miniatures of their mascots, some distribute wrist bands to show team loyalty.
Image: Kings XI Punjab's mascot during a match between the Kings XI Punjab and the Delhi Daredevils
Burning the dance podium
The Kolkata Knight Riders are on fire this season, just like their Cheerleaders on the dance podium.
The Shah Rukh Khan-owned team have nailed two wins from two matches. Their first victory was in the opening encounter against Deccan Chargers. They then tasted success again on Sunday, when they beat Royal Challengers Bangalore by 31 runs.
Image: Cheerleaders entertain the crowd during the match between the Kolkata Knight Riders and Royal Challengers Bangalore
Live music adds to the fun element
Famous Indian percussionist Sivamani plays the drums and adds to the enthusiasm of the crowds.
The Cheerleaders also shake a leg to the beats of his drum as he gets spectators involved.
Image: Percussionist Sivamani performs during the match between the Chennai Super Kings and Deccan Chargers