Cricket and TV celebrities- a heady mix, that never fails to enthuse Indian audiences. And that of course is the not-so-secret sauce solely responsible for the overwhelming success of Box Cricket League, Ekta Kapoor’s smashing offering to TV regulars.
As the third edition of MTV Box Cricket League gets underway– yes, MTV is presenting the edition this year,unlike GECs in previous editions– IndianWikiMedia got a chance to have a tête-à-tête with Kamya Punjabi, owner of Team Jaipur Joshiley- last year’s semi-finalists.
It is no secret that Kamya is very protective and caring about her team. In fact, she’s like a mother hen around her brood– worrying about tiny details, taking responsibility for the nitty-gritties of managing her herd and ensuring that everyone’s in the best of spirits.
When asked about her responsibilities as a team owner, Kamya says, “It’s a big responsibility- from the selection of the players to their practices to their uniforms and taking care of them and then selecting the theme, playing element for the matches, and so on. So yes, I think I am determined as a mother.”
Continuing in the same vein, she says, “The owner has the same responsibility as a mother. I treat my team as my family and we all are extremely close and together for almost three years.”
Her equation with Rajeev Thakur, captain of her team, is equally impressive.
Talking about Rajeev’s role in the success of her team, she says, “Rajeev Thakur is the captain of our team. He is like my support system, as far as BCL is concerned. He is the captain and I think I just rely on him blindly and completely. I don’t know what I would do without Rajeev Thakur in BCL. New members come and go, but I and Rajeev Thakur are together since three years for BCL. Even otherwise, we’ve been friends for the last ten years now.”
Kamya is held in high regard by her team members, and is considered one of the friendliest owners around. When asked about the secret of her popularity, she declares, “As I said, I pamper my team, my players. I take them out to parties and we order great food. The atmosphere at the practice and at the matches is like family. I pamper them and I love them all. Whether we win or we lose, I just love them.”
Being a die-hard cricket-lover, Kamya lists her favourite cricketers for us. “As you know, I am a cricket freak; so there are a lot of players that I like. I love cricket so I love a lot of players. I love MS Dhoni, ViratKohli, Sachin Tendulkar, Shaun Marsh. I love Pakistani players also. There are many, so I can’t take a particular name.”
Though Kamya is crazy about cricket, and would have loved to play alongside her team, she wants to prioritise her role as team-owner. Says Kamya, “I have so many responsibilities as an owner. If I play at the same time, my responsibilities as an owner may get distracted. Yes, I can multi-task if needed, but I feel I should take care of other stuff. I will play some other time, but as of now, my hands are full and I really have a lot to do as an owner.”
When asked whether TV celebs add an element of glamour to cricket, she states, “You know it all depends. The audience knows the actors (TV stars) so the way their character is, likewise are the expectations. But someone who is passionate about cricket only sees cricket. I would not get into this glamour thing. Let’s keep the game and the glamour thing separately. I am one of those, I feel someone who is playing very good cricket would impress me and someone glamorous, but not playing cricket, would not impress me at all, would hold nothing in my eye.”
Having made that amply clear, Kamya is pretty gung-ho about her team’s chances this year. When asked about her vision for her team, she replies, “We all our winners. The way they work hard, the way they give their best, everyone from the team is passionate and all are together. Nobody here is to make money or their careers. My players, my team, they are all passionate about cricket and they give their best so they all are winners for me and we have always made up for the semi-finale, last year we lost by 1 run. And the vision for my team- I see them as winners!”
Well Kamya, we, at IWM, also wish Jaipur Joshileys the very best of luck and hope they win this year!