“Hmm…. That’s interesting.” I reply, sipping my ante meridiem cuppa tea.
“If the Indian cricketers can have the ICL and IPL, the hockey players, the IHL and the tennis players, the ITL, then us canines should have a league of our own.”
Bolshoi likes to keep up with the Joneses; except his Joneses are quite a different kettle of fish.
“What will you call it?” I play along.
“We considered a few names, such as Indian Canine League and Indian Hound League, but finally settled for Indian Doggy League since there would have been confusion with the other leagues.”
Bolshoi is very good at coming up with acronyms.
“That sounds reasonable; the name’s not too intimidating. It has a distinct, friendly ring to it. What sport would you and your fellow hounds be championing?”
“That’s the USP of our league. We will not restrict ourselves to just one sport. We are four-legged animals, unlike you human bipeds and hence more multi-faceted. We are inclusive and will have a bouquet of sports in which each team will mandatorily participate. We aim to build and foster all-round abilities. We will emphasize our Indianness with games such as kabaddi,malkhamb and kho-kho.”
Bolshoi has read Kotler over my shoulder.
“But isn’t that a bit more complicated?”
“Not at all. We will be a year-round league, allowing teams to rest key players when they are fatigued or injured. We have modelled ourselves on the decathlon, utilizing a point system for every team sport. The winner will be the team earning the most points across the team competitions. Consistency and versatility are key to being crowned champion here. The intricacies of the point system will be worked out later.”
“That’s definitely novel.” I respond.
“We initially considered forming teams based on different dog breeds but that would make the league lop-sided favouring the larger dogs. Instead , we have opted for the draft system, where each team will choose their players in a round-robin fashion from the picks.”
“That seems equitable.”
Bolshoi is fair.
“Finally, we need sponsors for the teams. We have approached a few business houses such as The Tatas, The Birlas and the Godrejs to bid for franchises.We have taken care to ensure that there is no overlap between our sponsors and other leagues. We do not encourage divided loyalties amongst our patrons.”
Bolshoi is sure of his ground.
“That’s very good. Sounds like you have done your research.”
“Yes, we are trying to entice Saif Ali Khan, Akshaye Kumar, Kareena Kapoor and Aamir Khan to invest as well.”
“That’s excellent. Bring on the glamour quotient.Bring it on.”
I love actors with large wallets.And evidently—so does Bolshoi.
“We are also considering requesting Aamir to produce ‘Lagaan 2’ starring our top performers. It will commemorate the first anniversary of our tournament.”
Bolshoi can kill two birds with one stone—when he wishes to.
“You seem to have it all charted out. Good luck to you and Botox.”
I sign off, making my way to the kitchen to wash my tea-cup.
“Thank you. Our champions shall be called ‘Hot Dogs.’”
The chinaware drops and shatters.
PS: Bolshoi The Boxer is a fictional character created and popularised by Busybee.
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