7 popular cricketers who turned politicians 

PTI Party Campaigns Days Before Pakistan Election

Cricketers inspire people with their hard work, passion, and determination to fight in order to achieve success.

After having proven their worth on the cricket field, several cricketers jumped into the murky field of politics to start their second innings. While some failed spectacularly, others tasted success in the politics. Here are the 7 cricketers who played International cricket and then jumped into politics.


#7 Navjot Singh Sidhu

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Navjot Singh Sidhu is a former Indian cricketer and television personality. He had a career spanning over 19 years as a professional cricketer, making his debut for India in 1983.

After having retired from cricket, he turned to commentary and television. He joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in 2004 and contested the general election from Amritsar and won the election.

In 2016, he was nominated to the Rajya Sabha from Punjab before he quit the party. He joined Congress in 2017 and contested the general election from Amritsar East and won the election.

#6 Vinod Kambli

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Kambli played for India as a middle order batsman. He is the first cricketer to score a century in an ODI on his birthday. He also appeared in few serials and Bollywood films as an actor.

Kambli joined the Lok Bharati Party and was appointed as vice-president of the party. He contested the 2009 Assembly election from Vikhroli, Mumbai as a Lok Bharati Party candidate and lost the election.

#5 Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi

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A former captain of the Indian cricket team, Pataudi was regarded as one of India's greatest cricket captains. He was also considered as the 'best fielder in the world' during his time.

Mansoor Ali contested in the general elections from Bhopal under Congress party in 1991 and eventually lost it. In the year 1971, he lost elections while contesting for Vishal Haryana party led by Rao Birender Singh.

#4 Arjuna Ranatunga

ARJUNA RANATUNGA PORTRAIT

The former Sri Lankan cricketer and the World Cup winning captain, Ranatunga changed the fortunes of Sri Lankan cricket. After retirement, he worked in many posts of Sri Lanka Cricket.

Ranatunga entered into politics by joining the Sri Lanka Freedom Party and contested the 2001 parliamentary elections with PA from Colombo district. He served as Deputy Minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment Promotion. Now, he is the cabinet minister of Ports and Shipping.

#3 Sanath Jayasuriya

England v Sri Lanka - 1st ODI: Royal London One-Day Series

The former Sri Lankan cricketer, Sanath Jayasuriya was considered as one of the greatest ODI players of all time. He had won many matches for his team with his powerful striking and all-around performances.

He is the only cricketer who was also an active politician during his playing days. He jumped into politics in 2010 as a candidate for Matara District. Jayasuriya served as the Deputy Minister of UPFA government led by Mahinda Rajapaksa.

#2 Mohammad Azharuddin

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Azharuddin was an elegant middle-order batsman and led the Indian team in 47 Tests during 1990's. However, he was banned by the BCCI for life after being involved in a match-fixing scandal in 2000.

In 2009, he joined the Indian National Congress party. Azharuddin won the Indian general election, 2009, from Moradabad in Uttar Pradesh to become a Member of Parliament.

#1 Imran Khan

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The former Pakistan skipper, Imran Khan, started a political party 'Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf' after retiring from International cricket in 1992. He led Pakistan to victory at the 1992 Cricket World Cup.

Imran Khan founded a political party in 1996, but he was unsuccessful during his initial era. After 22 years of humiliations, Khan may become the Prime Minister of Pakistan in the general election of 2018.

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Edited by Siddharth Ostwal