Wow, the Dalai Lama, Cricketers Bow

April 19th 2010

Dharamsala, HP, India, 18 April 2010 (By Gaurav Bisht, The Hindustan Times) - Spectators at the scenic stadium on Sunday had a rare glimpse of spirituality and sport coming together, with cricketers lining up to touch the feet of the Dalai Lama who presented "khatas' - Tibetan ceremonial scarves - to members of Kings XI Punjab and Chennai Super Kings.

Though the 74-year exiled spiritual leader rarely watches sports events, the Indian Premier League matches - that have driven this otherwise sleepy hill town crazy - seemed to have evoked his interest too.
Bollywood actress and co-owner of Kings XI Punjab Preity Zinta explained the nuances of cricket to the Dalai Lama, who told her "he felt good to be here but does not understand the game", personal secretary Tenzin Taklha told HT.

The Dalai Lama spent an hour at the stadium and both the skippers, Kumar Sangakkara of Kings XI and Mahinder Singh Dhoni, bowed before touching his feet.

Yuvraj Singh, during his visit to the Buddhist temple on Saturday had asked the spiritual leader about his interest in sport. The Dalai Lama replied that he had developed a liking for ping pong in the mid-50's when he visited China. "I played it with Chinese Premier Chou En-Lai during my visit." (watch video)

Sangakkara, in the post match press conference, said he had always looked forward to meeting him.

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