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Bollywood star Lauren Gottlieb dazzled by kabaddi

An interview with Lauren Gottlieb after she was seen cheering for Dabang Delhi in Pro Kabaddi

Lauren Gottlieb Sunil Chhetri Rakhee Tandon Kapoor pro kabaddi dabang delhi
From l-r: Indian football captain Sunil Chhetri along with Rakhee Kumar Tandon and Bollywood actor Lauren Gottlieb cheering for Dabang Delhi

From training the likes of Tom Cruise and Toby Maguire to starring in the Bollywood flick – ABCD and finishing runners-up in Jhalak Dikhla Jaa, Lauren Gotlieb has an illustrious resume to say the least. What she is not known for though, is her affinity towards different sports and the inclination to pick them up.

Here in the capital to cheer for Dabang Delhi in the ongoing Pro Kabaddi League, she chatted exclusively with Sports Keeda and opened up about her experience, the sport of Kabaddi in general and how she has grown extremely fond of it.

Here are the excerpts from the interview:

Q. Hi Lauren, we understand it was the first time you watched a game of kabaddi live, tell us about your experience?

It was fascinating to say the least, it was indeed a first for me and while I have watched and played extensively back home, hadn’t experienced anything like this after coming to India. The players, their physiques – it was all so awe-worthy. Also, I liked that some of them had a celebratory dance move, could relate so much to the shimmys and the nuances there.

Q. You also managed to interact with the boys before the game, considering they would seldom interact with celebrities such as you, was it difficult to make them open up?

I did, and while they were slightly apprehensive to initiate a conversation, we got along really well post that. Apart from the game, we chatted about how the tournament’s gone so far and also about everything dance (chuckles).

Q. You hail from a place where the ceremonial first pitch (MLB) is almost a ritual connecting people from various fields to sports. How would you compare that to the experience you had yesterday?

It is indeed, the first pitch is as much as part of our folklore as anything else. What it does is brings people from non-sporting backgrounds together with our heroes, the sportspersons. It’s as thrilling as it can get for us and personally I enjoy it a lot. It was thus not much different for me today, enjoyed every bit of watching the game with Sunil (Chhetri); so much so that I am a true blue Dabang now!

Q. Kabaddi in its current rendition like dance, is seen as a form of performance art. Would you agree? And did you find any similarities between the two?

The resemblance is uncanny. As you mention, both of them involve performing in front of audiences. And it takes a lot to do that. To overcome anxiety and be able to put up your best show is what is needed and thus I could relate a lot to them!

Q. Finally, the Dabangs and the crowd in Delhi seemed overjoyed by your presence yesterday, would we see more of you before the league finishes? Maybe in the play-offs which are scheduled in Mumbai.

Definitely! As I mentioned I had a crazy amount of fun today. Would love to come back and cheer for the Dabangs again.

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