Grand welcome for Indian cricketers

Wednesday 10th July 2024 07:07 EDT

An ocean of jubilant fans poured onto Mumbai’s Marine Drive to cheer the world champions when they returned home last week after being stranded in Barbados. Rohit Sharma’s Men in Blue held the coveted trophy in an open bus convoy to Wankhede stadium as tens of thousands danced, waved the India flag and flashed smartphone lights. The bus covered the five-minute distance in more than one-and-a-half hours as the players savoured the evening of their lives.

The crowd chanted ‘We Love You, Team India’, ‘Team India Zindabad’ 'Mumbaicha Raja, Rohit Sharma’, and more, voicing the ecstasy of seeing the T20 World Cup return to India after 17 years.

One would have thought the team would be tired after a long flight from Barbados to Delhi for a meeting with PM Narendra Modi and then to Mumbai but as Rohit said that “he wants to enjoy every minute, every second of it” and the rest of the pack followed.

He enjoyed to the fullest as he led the team onto the field to a vociferous reception from those present in the stadium, who had waited patiently since 4pm. He was the first one to break into a jig to a dhol tasha group giving their all in the MCA Pavilion. Virat Kohli then dragged him closer to them and then the entire team followed. The Wankhede isn’t the biggest stadium in the country but the electric atmosphere it produces is unmatched. The cheers were loudest for Rohit’s captaincy, Kohli’s tenacity, Bumrah’s accuracy, Surya’s that catch and Pandya’s all-round performance.

PM Modi hosts champs

Prime Minister Narendra Modi rolled out the red carpet for Team India. Despite the monsoon showers and heavy security deployment, fans turned out in huge numbers at the IGI airport to greet the champions.

“An excellent meeting with our Champions! Hosted the World Cup winning team at 7, LKM and had a memorable conversation on their experiences through the tournament,” the Prime Minister said on his social media handles, sharing photos and videos while interacting with the champions.

The Prime Minister was flanked by Rohit and outgoing head coach Rahul Dravid in the group picture. Several players later shared photos with the PM. Pace spearhead Jasprit Bumrah shared a photograph of his wife and son with the PM. Spinner Kuldeep Yadav also shared images of his interaction and looked emotional as he was hugged by Modi. Pacer Arshdeep Singh and his parents were all smiles posing with Modi.

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