Too much cricket appears to be not only taking its toll on players but also killing fans' enthusiasm. The usual frenzy around the sport was somewhat lacking during the first One-day International between India and England at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium here on Friday.
There was neither the huge demand for match tickets nor the fanfare associated with one-day cricket.
Usually, the 40,000-capacity stadium is jampacked even before the first ball is bowled, but it was half empty when the day-night match began at 2.30 p.m. Fans began to trickle in after a few overs but plenty of seats were vacant even after two hours.
Though the Hyderabad Cricket Association (HCA) made available 29,000 tickets for sale through a bank and e-seva (citizen services) centres three days ago, the tickets were available even after the match began.
"I hardly miss any match in Hyderabad but this time I have decided to skip it as I believe there has been an overdose of cricket," said Ravi Kumar, a young cricket fan.
The absence of key players Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag also dampened the people's enthusiasm.