Fans feeling blue over missing India

GEORGETOWN, Guyana, April 7, 2007 (AFP) – Hundreds of Indian fans, who dreamt of seeing India and star batsman Sachin Tendulkar take on South Africa here on Saturday, were left cursing their luck at the National Stadium.

If things had gone to plan, India would have qualified from the first round to take their place in what was expected to be a highly-charged clash with Graeme Smith’s side.

However, seeing Asian neighbours Bangladesh make up the fixture instead only sent them into a deeper despair.

“We tried our level best to get a refund on our tickets and our hotel bookings cancelled, but we failed,” said Nilesh Kumar, who has come from Bradford, northern England to watch the World Cup.

“In the end we decided to spend a few hundred dollars more and have the luxury of sightseeing in Antigua and Guyana, but we wanted to see India and Tendulkar.”

India were dumped out in the first round of the World Cup following their upset defeat against Bangladesh. They also lost to Sri Lanka and their only win came against minnows Bermuda.

India’s Australian coach Greg Chappell resigned from his post as billions of Indian fans were left disappointed and incensed over their team’s abject exit.