Thought it was a prank, the former Royals owner recalls the horror of 2013
“They [the police] were in no hurry and only after explaining to me in detail did they tell me that they were going to Ankeet Chavan’s room to pick him up," he added.
Updated - Apr 10, 2018 8:47 pm
The 2013 edition of the Indian Premier League brought a lot of infamy to the tournament. Three prominent names of the Rajasthan Royals camp found themselves in the news headlines for an alleged involvement in the spot fixing scandal. The then owner of the franchise, Raghu Iyer, found himself being interrogated by the officials as well. Recently, Raghu Iyer recalled the horror of the 2013 spot fixing scandal that had hit the Royals camp.
He revealed the inside story to renowned journalist Boria Majumdar in the latter’s book, titled Eleven Gods and a billion Indians: The On and Off the Field story of cricket in India and beyond. The book was recently launched in the markets. Recalling the dark day, Iyer remembered how he first thought that all of it was a prank that was being played on him.
“We had a sponsor shoot with Cyrus Broacha [a television anchor and video jockey] the previous day and my first thought was this was a prank. I was being made a ‘bakra’ [sacrificial lamb]. I even said so and tried to laugh it off. That’s when I was told [by the duty manager] it wasn’t a prank and that I was being summoned,” Raghu Iyer recalled.
“They [the police] were in no hurry and only after explaining to me in detail did they tell me that they were going to Ankeet Chavan’s room to pick him up,” he added.
Meanwhile, Boria Majumdar added that the then Royals owner was in a totally tricky situation. Many had started targeting him as the king pin in the entire fiasco and he had nothing else but to feel bad for what had happened with three of his key players.
“There was very little for him to do but feel gutted and apprehensive. The two others, S. Sreesanth and Ajit Chandila, had already been nabbed and were waiting in a police van outside. For Iyer, the happenings seemed more reel life than real, but the truth was he was one of the central characters of the drama. He was caught in the middle of the biggest crisis the IPL had ever seen, and as chief executive, he was expected to take charge of a situation that was on a downward spiral,” Boria Majumdar noted.
On the book’s specialty
Talking about the book, the author noted that it is not an everyday cricket book. It is more about the background stories and the insider details about the sport. Boria Majumdar is an author, a cricket historian and sports journalist.
“It’s the first book ever that will take readers backstage and talk about what really happens in the world of Indian cricket — from controversies to humour to inside stories to disclosures,” Majumdar told the Gulf News.