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Indian cricketers and politics go hand-in-hand.

5 Indian cricketers who have ventured into politics

Cricketers in India have a larger-than-life persona and are celebrated more than any other type of celebrity. They are household names in every corner of the country.

After proving their worth on the cricket field, many players jump into the field of politics in a bid to serve the nation. They try to use their social popularity to influence people and bring a change in society.


Much like cricket, politics is also a difficult profession in India. While many cricketers have turned to politics for their second innings, only a few have tasted success.

On that note, let's take a look at five Indian cricketers who ventured into politics.


#5 Gautam Gambhir


Making his debut in politics with the Lok Sabha elections in 2019, Gautam Gambhir has already made a name for himself in politics.

He contested the Lok Sabha elections from the East Delhi constituency against AAP's Atishi Marlena and Congress' Arvinder Singh Lovely. The former Indian opener swept his opponents out of the park, winning the election by almost 7 lakh votes.

Since then, Gambhir has been a fierce voice for the ruling Bhartiya Janata Party. He is often seen indulging in a war of words with political opponents and taking them head-on.


#4 Manoj Tiwary


The prolific run-scorer in domestic cricket is one of the few active cricketers to join politics. The Bengal stalwart joined the All India Trinamool Congress in 2021.

Manoj Tiwary contested the 2021 West Bengal Legislative Assembly elections from the Shibpur constituency. He won the election and was later appointed as the Minister of State for Sports and Youth Affairs.

Despite being immensely busy with political work, Manoj turned out for Bengal in the recently concluded Ranji Trophy. The right-handed batter amassed 433 runs in five matches at an average of 43.30, including two centuries and as many fifties.

#3 Mohammad Azharuddin

While many associate Azharuddin with the match-fixing scandal, the wristy and elegant batsman is one of the best that India produced. His flicks off the pad were a treat to watch. He scored over 15,000 runs for the Indian team in international cricket.

After the infamous match-fixing scandal broke out, Azharuddin was away from the limelight for almost 10 years before appearing in public life again, this time to serve the people as a politician.


He entered politics in 2009 and contested the Lok Sabha elections from Moradabad for the Indian National Congress. Azharuddin has also served as the working president of the Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee.

#2 Kirti Azad

Part of the 1983 World Cup-winning team, Kirti Azad hails from a family of politicians. His father Bhagwat Jha Azad, a Congress leader, had served as the Chief Minister of Bihar.

Azad, who represented India in seven Tests and 25 ODIs, tried his hand at broadcasting after hanging up his boots before joining politics. The former cricketer joined BJP and represented the party for more than two decades, winning from Bihar’s Darbhanga seat.

However, he criticized senior leader Arun Jaitley over alleged irregularities and corruption in the Delhi and District Cricket Association, which led to his ouster from the party. He joined Congress in 2019 before joining TMC ahead of the 2022 Legislative Assembly elections in five states.

#1 Harbhajan Singh


One of the greatest off-spinners in the history of the game, Harbhajan Singh has many cricketing achievements to his name. He played a key role in numerous memorable triumphs for the Indian side and was part of the 2007 World T20 and 2011 World Cup-winning teams.


After a successful career that saw him pick up over 700 international wickets across formats, Harbhajan finally entered the tricky field of politics.

On Monday (July 18), Harbhajan took oath in Rajya Sabha as a Member of Parliament, representing the Aam Admi Party (AAP). The former cricketer has declared that he wants to serve the people of Punjab and the nation in the coming days.

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Edited by
Akshay Saraswat
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