Cricket to kick-start Jaipur Literature Festival

Sreesanth will lead the Royals XI against Authors XI © AFP

New Delhi: Jan 15, 2013

Cricket, the gentleman’s game central to many literary works, is now kick starting the Jaipur Literature Festival.

The 6th edition of the annual literature extravaganza is poised to begin with a friendly cricket match between authors and cricketers on January 23, a day before the five-day DSC Jaipur Literature Festival is scheduled to commence in Jaipur.

Led by Sreesanth , the ‘Royals XI’, will take on ‘Authors XI’ team captained by literary agent Charlie Campbell. Ashok Menaria, Ajit Chandela, Dishant Yagnik, Raghu Iyer, Shashi Tharoor, Tarun Tejpal and Lakshya Raj Singh Mewar are among the players constituting the ‘Royals XI’ team. The ‘Authors XI’ team includes prominent names such as Richard Beard, Sam Carter, Nicholas Hogg, James Holland, Tom Holland, Anthony McGowan, Anosh Irani, Alex Preston and Charlie Campbell, the captain of the team.

“It is a dream made real for the Authors to play the Royals XI. We feel like cricket’s answer to Rocky Balboa. We are all ready, if asked, to turn our backs on books and join the growing ranks of fans of T20 cricket,” said Charlie Campbell in a statement on Monday.

The pink city of Jaipur is also home to the Rajasthan Royals (RR), an Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise currently captained by former Indian captain Rahul Dravid.

Raghu Iyer, CEO, Rajasthan Royals, said, “As a team that epitomizes the elegance, royalty and rich heritage of Rajasthan, we are proud and excited to be associated with the DSC Jaipur Literature festival.

Other than being a magnificent platform to celebrate the wonderful art of writing, the festival is extraordinary because it is the most prestigious event in the Asia-Pacific region to recognise the works of both national and international writers. We are thrilled to host the friendly match which promises to be as energetic and competitive as the literature festival itself.”

The match is set to be a new fixture in the annual event at Jaipur, and would be open to the public at no cost, according to organisers.

“It is an unusual combination to have authors and cricketers in a match of skill this new festival fixture will be a delight for audiences from Jaipur and around the world,” said festival producer, Sanjoy K Roy.