Indian model vows to strip for World Cup win

NEW DELHI: Women in India are encouraged to dress modestly at all times, but a brasher side to modern life has been exposed after a popular model vowed to strip naked if the nation wins the cricket World Cup. Poonam Pandey, 20, who features in a best-selling Indian swimwear calendar, said she wanted to provide an incentive to players by promising them she would bare all – though whether her offer will be welcomed is not known. “I’m a cricket fanatic and I’m a diehard supporter of my nation. India needs a lot of support and this is my way of supporting the team,” she told several newspapers on Wednesday. Asked by reporters if she was pulling a publicity stunt, she replied: “Absolutely not. I’m confident of my body and I’m doing this to excite our boys to play better.” Pandey received widespread media attention for her pledge, with the Times of India illustrating its story with a colour photograph of her wearing a skimpy bikini. “Pray for Todays Match that the Boys Play well and make us Proud,” she said on her Twitter page ahead of India’s crunch semi-final game against Pakistan. Her offer echoes that of Larissa Riquelme, a model who attracted global fame by pledging to run naked through the streets of Paraguay’s capital Asuncion if her country won the 2010 football World Cup. Paraguay were knocked out by Spain in the quarter-finals and she instead posed nude in front of her national flag.