By Subhash K. Jha
Mumbai, April 8 (IANS) Action star Akshay Kumar is taking his role as
a cricketer in "Patiala House" so seriously that he has been training
rigorously under former Test bowler Paras Mhambrey even before
shooting has started.
Paras, currently working with the Indian Premier League's Mumbai
Indians team, has been taking time off to coach Akshay whenever
Akshay has just returned from his back therapy in Germany and wants to
continue training steadily and regularly so that his bowling skills
are sharpened by the time he starts shooting for "Patiala House".
"Akshay has been training diligently and religiously. His coach Paras
Mhambrey even joined him at Malshej Ghat for Farah's film ('Tees Maar
Khan'). Because right after that our cricket sequences start in
London," Nikhil Advani, who is directing "Patiala House", told IANS.
Advani's British sports coordinator Robert Miller, who handled the
hockey and cricket scenes in "Chak De! India" and "Dil Bole Hadippa"
respectively, is here right now finalising the list of international
cricketers who will play with Akshay in "Patiala House".
"We're looking at international cricketers from all over the world -
England, South Africa, Australia, Bangladesh. The fact that the IPL
matches are on makes our job easier because Robert can meet and
negotiate with a lot of international cricketers while they are here,"
The film also requires county-level and regional players who will be
finalised after Miller fixes on the big-name cricketers.
"I basically need the cricketers from May 25 to June 5 for the various
games that we'll be shooting in England. So we can work our schedules
according to the cricketers' date diaries," said Advani.
This, admits Advani, is easier said than done. "I've a real uphill
task ahead. And I've stopped sleeping with anxiety. But I've one
expert cricketer on my team already. My leading man Akshay. You've to
see how well he bowls now."
Akshay is apparently so bowled over by his coach Paras that he now
intends to request the former test cricketer to train his son Aarav as