NEW DELHI: Despite being a global icon and one of the most renowned faces of Indian movies, Shah Rukh Khan comes across as an astute cricket fan and he means serious business when it comes to leading from the front as a co-owner of Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), feels former England captain David Gower.
In a freewheeling chat on ‘Q20’ show, Gower conceded that despite being a man of such repute and coming from a different vocation, Shah Rukh’s love and passion for the game is something that is indeed worth praising.
“I was in Kolkata last year and was invited to the match between KKR and Kings XI Punjab. I was delivering a speech and from there, after the dinner, was escorted straight to the Eden Gardens for the match. It was at fag end of the match when I reached and was led straight to Shah Rukh’s den and was introduced to him. I had a formal introduction with him and that is when I realised that he is an ardent fan of the game and a very passionate owner,” Gower said.
“I just got the impression that…his prime motive was there to watch the game. He wasn’t really at that stage too fussed about sitting down having a long conversation, but it was very nice to be introduced to him. That is what strikes me about people like that. I mean they have their own reputations, huge as they are. They love this game of cricket. It’s extraordinary, not just in India, but you know, here in the UK, around the world, the sort of people who become passionate about the game of cricket.
“The match was easily won by KKR when I got to the stadium and despite that SRK was still very much focused on the game. But for me, the interesting thing, apart from meeting him, of course, was just to be there at night, all game for the first time. Eden Gardens is one of the greatest stadiums, obviously because of its reputation and size, the number of people it can accommodate. So just to be there was special, to meet SRK made it even more special.
“And without giving away too many secrets, he did say that if the Knight Riders made the playoffs, he might just fly me back, come and see how they got on. Sadly, that wasn’t to be, but I’m available. Next time Knight Riders get to the semi-finals, get to the play-offs of the IPL, I would love to be there,” he concluded.