Hyderabad: The 10th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) had a perfect start at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium here on Wednesday with the opening ceremony providing some real entertainment for the holiday crowd.
The nearly two-month non-stop action got off to a flying start with Bollywood actress Amy Jackson setting the stage on fire with her performance.
The opening ceremony began with 'Chale Chalo', the famous song from blockbuster 'Lagaan'.
It was the first in a series of eight opening ceremonies, one in each hosting venue. This is the first time in the IPL's history that the organisers have decided to provide some glamour quotient before the beginning of the first match in all the venues.
The opening ceremony also saw cricketing greats Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Virender Sehwag and V.V.S. Laxman sharing their experience of the IPL. Tendulkar said he never thought the IPL would become such a huge event.
"It's been a long journey," said former India captain Ravi Shastri, about the IPL. The flashback big moments of the last nine editions of the IPL were shown on the screen.
The home crowd loudly cheered Sunrisers Hyderabad as last year's champions took on runners-up Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB).
There were loud cheers when RCB captain Virat Kohli, who was not playing due to injury, led the team on to the field and presented a token of truce to SRH skipper David Warner.
The weather was cloudy and pleasant. There was a significant drop in the temperature due to the change in the weather in the evening. The unseasonal rain accompanied by strong winds on Tuesday had some impact on the preparations and with the met office forecasting more rain on Wednesday, the organisers were keeping their fingers crossed.
They heaved a sigh of relief as it did not rain and the mercury dipped to 33 degree Celsius, a significant drop from 40, the highest temperature of the season recorded last week.
With Wednesday being a holiday on account of Ramanavmi, the stadium was full to its capacity much before the beginning of the opening ceremony.
They cheered lustily when Warner hit a couple of boundaries and the first six of this year's edition. However, the captain's innings ended in the very second over.