Glitz, glamour planned for IPL closing ceremony

After five weeks of exhilarating cricket, the Indian Premier League (IPL) will draw to a close in an electrifying closing ceremony at Wanderers Cricket Stadium in Johannesburg Sunday.

“The closing ceremony is going to be spectacular,” IPL media director Trevor Jones told BuaNews Friday.

The two teams that will play in the final would only be known after the semi-final matches are complete.

“The IPL has been an amazing spectacle that has surprised many in South Africa and the world. To host this tournament at short notice; the results were just amazing,” he added.

The IPL cricket tournament was shifted from India to South Africa over security concerns of the players as the government had to concentrate on the parliamentary elections.

According to a detailed programme released Friday, the line-up for the closing ceremony includes performances by world renowned music legend Eddy Grant and the American super-star Akon.

Eddy Grant will perform the popular “Walking on Sunshine” and his anti-apartheid hit song “Gimme Hope Jo’anna”.

Akon, who recently met President Jacob Zuma, will perform his Grammy award songs accompanied by Shilpa Shetty, the Bollywood actress and co-owner of the IPL team the Rajasthan Royals.

Adding Bollywood glamour will be actress Katrina Kaif, who together with a troupe of Indian and South African dancers will perform the well-known “Jai Ho”, which was the theme song for the Oscar award wining movie “Slumdog Millionaire”.

President Zuma is expected to attend the IPL final match and would also address the stadium just before the game starts.

Other highlights on the night would include a programme featuring renowned percussionist Shivamani and a group of Indian and South African drummers.

Apart from the various musical programmes, the crowd would also be introduced to the Miss Bollywood IPL South Africa finalists, culminating with the crowning of the winner of the beauty competition.

About 1,500 flying lanterns will be lit and released, and a thrilling pyrotechnics show, using several thousand rounds of fireworks, will light up the Johannesburg skyline.

The glittering spectacle will end with a presentation ceremony for the winning cricket team.

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