Cricket fans from all across the globe eagerly wait for this incredible T20 league which witnesses the best in the business gather to showcase their skills and help their respective franchises lift the trophy.
While the fans are not allowed to enter the arena due to the COVID-19 pandemic across the globe, the entertainment industry is leaving no stones unturned to enthral the audiences with some exclusive contents. The second season of Power Play With Champions, featuring actor and presenter Samir Kochhar and former India cricketer Virender Sehwag, is entertaining the audiences. The second season of Power Play With Champions is streaming live on Flipkart Video.
MyKhel caught up with Samir Kochhar and asked some candid questions to the actor/presenter about the show and how is it working with Virender Sehwag. Samir Kochhar also shared his opinions about the best actors in Indian Cricket.
Here are the excerpts:
MyKhel: What new are the viewers going to experience in this second season of Power Play With Champions?
Samir Kochhar: Well, as the show goes Power Play With Champions, it’s an extremely fun, engaging show that you know is interactive, and makes quick 10 minute segments that people can come on, and people tune into it. They’re going to be six questions that are going to be fired and thrown at people, they’re going to be multiple choice answers, and they’re all going to be related to the tournament that we all love watching. And what’s new to watch is the fact that the tournament is back in India, is back in our home round, you know, the players there are new additions in the teams that have made that way.
We’re going to see legends like Dhoni. In all the big grades, heavyweights from across different cricketing countries who are going to be joining hands with India’s finest talent, and this tournament is always loads and loads of fun and I think that what we’re going to do with Power Play With Champions is to get the viewers engaged with the banter, the fun that we had in the first season, and continue that in its true spirit and Viru Paji, of course, brings a lot of entertainment on the show. It’s great fun that we have these, these moments that we share. We pull each other’s legs, we want to outbid each other and compete with each other so it will be an overall engaging, season with lots and lots of fun frolic and excitement.
MK: How was your experience of being the host of the show?
SK: It was amazing. I really enjoyed working with Flipkart Video, this is my second association with them. I’ve also done the Bid and Win show with them which was again quickfire, a lot of fun. I think as a platform what they are doing is something that I’m supremely impressed with, and you know, it’s not just me, whoever I know and people who are playing around, it’s not just these two shows but various other shows. I think, what they’ve done very successfully is to you know create this kind of content that is very interactive.
People are not just viewing content but they’re also a part of it. They are competing they’re winning prizes. And I think it takes a lot of great thinking to put content like this out there. So, I had a great time in the first edition, it was bang in the middle of the pandemic and things were hectic, but we still managed to pull the show through. And each time I think there is a lot of effort that goes into you know catering to what people want.
I’m quite amazed by the fact that there are over 300 million users of Flipkart and if you go into the Flipkart Video app, every show is so unique to its own, and so many people are watching it.
So yeah, I’ve had a great experience working with them and I’m very happy that you know this T20 tournament has come back within four months, usually, we have to wait for a year.
So yes, it seems like we never left the set, we’re back at our location. Viru Paji and I have this, this great, great, you know, fun, that that exists between us and we had a great time, and we’re going to continue with this season as well. So, always a pleasure to be back with Flipkart Video.
MK: Viru Paaji (Virender Sehwag) is one of the funniest persons and his witty one-liners are being loved by all. Are the fans going to see the funny side of Virender Sehwag on the show?
SK: Always! You can’t hold the guy back! You can hold horses with chains, but cannot hold Viru Paaji back. He is what he is, he says what comes to his mind, and it helps the man with the kind of stature that he has, as a cricketer. You know, not only is he somebody who’s played the game and it’s in its highest form has been an achiever for India, but he also understands how to be on camera really well. And he doesn’t hold back as I was saying, he’s, he’s supremely funny off the camera too and it never seems like the cameras are rolling on this set, which has got, you know, quite a few people, and they’re always laughing on the set. He’s truly an entertainer, and you know, he says stuff that he likes, he also likes to pull people’s legs. He always does this with his team also like (Sourav) Ganguly or, you know (MS) Dhoni and he is known all of them.
The guy has tremendous know-how of the sport of cricket and also in terms of how to be on camera so you’re looking forward to it. He also loves eating fish, I think Mumbai is a special place for him. Whenever he’s here I have to feed him loads of fish. He’s here now, and, and yeah, we sometimes work out together we meet up in the evenings, so it just goes beyond just the three, four hours of shoot that we have on a daily basis. We hang out lots like these 45 days I think I spend more time with him than I spend with my wife.
MK: How do you describe Virender Sehwag as a person, off the camera?
SK: I think he’s just what he is, the kind of person who is just, it’s all real, so when you meet Viru Paaji, you know if he wants to do something, he’ll do it. He does not want to do something; he will not do it. I mean it’s great to have somebody with who you can be absolutely open. He’s also a very good listener. He’s also somebody who wants to experiment on camera. But all in all, he is a very simple guy.
You know, it’s amazing to hear stories about how he’s got these cows in his house and this desi ghee that he keeps taking out on a daily basis. He is very family-centric and he’s got multiple other things that he does. So it’s always great to be around him, to be among the company of this person.
He is absolutely bang on real as the word bill goes – real. He’s a lot of fun to be around with both, you know even off-camera, and he’s just, it’s almost like if you put the camera on at any point in front of him – you want to get great, you’re gonna get great content from him because he’s just he knows exactly what he’s saying he knows what works on camera. Easy guy, very easy going guy, likes to hang out and can chat a lot.
MK: Who is your favourite cricketer of all time? If he’s a cricketer before the IPL era then which IPL team you’d like him to play for?
SK: My absolute favourite of all time has to be Kapil Dev. Growing up watching him, was just something else. Not only was he was a fantastic and tremendous bowler for India, but his batting was just incredible. I want people to get out so he can come back sometimes so yeah, an all-rounder. In this tournament would lap up a person like him if it was held back in the day I don’t know how many crores people would spend to get this all-rounder capability. So yeah, if he was playing in this current generation and if he was playing around. I think any team would want him on their side. I have no favourite teams in the tournament although I am too close to it. But yeah, I think that some of the weaker teams could definitely do with him right now. Maybe like a Bangalore or someone who’s never won the tournament, who have just taken a Maxwell. But if there was a certain Kapil Dev on their team you never know how it would go.
MK: As you’ve spent a lot of time in the company of legendary cricketers, have you ever discussed with them about the one cricketer of the yesteryears who would have been a big hit in T20 cricket?
SK: Yeah, but I think that collectively all of them talk about people like Kapil Dev. They talk about Wasim Akram, you know, and that pool of calibre would have taken this tournament by storm. Just because he’s got the ability to ball so many different deliveries, is so accurate his way, his way to the back as well. So I think he would have been fantastic, even, you know by looking at some of the old, the other Pakistan players like Imran Khan would have been lapped up, again, a phenomenal all-rounder, they all talk about, that he would just be incredible in this in this format. And a lot of themselves also feel that they should have been playing too because they, it would be exciting for them to be playing in a format like this. It’s just, it’s amazing how many youngsters are getting an opportunity, and you know making a name for themselves, they’re paid really well so yeah I think that all the old-timers who sit around and say that I wish they all wish that this tournament was also there back in the day, and they would have loved playing it.
MK: Since you’ve been a part of the glamour world and you’ve also spent a lot of time with the cricketers, which cricketer according to you has the best acting skills? Any particular incident you’d like to share with our readers about the same.
SK: I think recently what I’ve seen is that Sunny Gavaskar does the most amazing mimicry in the world, like, you know, you have to give it to that man. He’s got such an incredible sense of humour that every time you know when we were doing this project one time, and we were the visual broadcasters, you know, just being in the makeup room with the man with the stories he’d come up with is just genius. He would imitate the cricketers, he would you know do the actions so I think he’d be a tremendous actor.
I think recently even Virat. He is just great – every advertisement that I am seeing him in he is portraying different characters. And he does it really well. Along with Dhoni as well, you know that guy is of course a pro, but I’ve been watching him in different multiple ad films, sometimes he is dressed up a cool dude sometimes with long hair so I think, yeah, these are a few of the guys would be fantastic actors.
MK: Which team and player are you going to back in this season of IPL?
SK: I get asked this a lot. The fact is, I am so close to the tournament and, you know, I’m from Delhi, I live in Mumbai, I travel the country, so there are no favourites but I always, you know, part of me is always wanting the underdogs to come forward. You’ve seen the Mumbai guys, Chennai blokes come in and win this tournament so many times. I’m looking for, you know, the other good teams. The teams have not made a mark till now. Delhi had a good run last year; would be nice to see them lift the trophy once. Bangalore again, never got it. So, I am rooting for the underdogs and if we’re talking about a player I’m looking out for – it has to be Dhoni this season, he didn’t have the best season last time but is there and I don’t know how long he’s gonna play this tournament so it would be nice to see him. We have played football together, and I keep asking and requesting and please don’t leave the game. Please don’t leave it. So super looking forward to watching him again in this tournament. And watch the underdogs perform.
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