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Sachin Tendulkar and Cristiano Ronaldo team up for football entertainment centres

By Tom Walker    05 Jan 2016
Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo will become the face of Smaaash Soccer Centres

Smaaash Entertainment, an Indian visitor attractions and sports company part-owned by cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar, has recruited Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo to help establish football-themed entertainment centres in the Middle East.

The company is looking to invest around US$20m (€18.6m, £13.6m) in setting up Smaaash Soccer Centres in Dubai, United Arab Emirates and Jeddah, Saudi Arabia – with Ronaldo as the high-profile “face” of the venture.

The first two venues are set to open later this year, with further sites being planned across the region.

According to Indian entrepreneur Shripal Morakhia – who owns Smaaash alongside Tendulkar – the centres will offer guests football-themed virtual reality games and skills challenges.

Speaking to the Times of India Morakhia said: "The company will launch a 65,000sq ft gaming arcade with soccer, cricket and other virtual games in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, in July and another in Dubai two months later.

“We have seven soccer challenges through which you can find out what percentage of Ronaldo is in you, but Smaaash is also about the games Ronaldo loves.”

Tendulkar, who owns 18 per cent of Smaaash, added: "I'm very excited about the Smaaash and Cristiano Ronaldo tie-up, both from an India perspective and for football fans worldwide.

“Football is the number one sport internationally, and is growing at a serious pace in India.”

Background – Tendulkar the entrepreneur

Smaaash is one of many sports and leisure-based business ventures that Tendulkar has invested in since retiring from international cricket in 2013.

He is the co-owner of two sports franchises – the Indian Super League (ISL) football club Kochi and the International Tennis Premier League side Mumbai.

He also owns three restaurants, is a stakeholder in the healthcare venture S Drive and Sach and holds a share in UAE-based travel portal Musafir.

Sachin Tendulkar

Ronaldo  Tendulkar  Dubai  Jeddah  cricket  football 
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