There was a time in history when top sportspersons played multiple sports at the same time and excelled in all of them. The most notable recent example in this regard would be AB de Villiers, the South African run machine, who played a variety of sports apart from cricket, and his compatriot Jonty Rhodes who could have also become a South Africa international in hockey.
However, as sports continues to become more specialised and time-consuming, especially at the elite level, multi-disciplinary prowess is becoming a rare quality in sportspersons. Gone are the days of Dennis Compton, an England cricket legend, who also won the FA Cup. The only sportsperson of note who can still claim to be a part of that tradition is Australian cricketer Ellyse Perry who has represented her country in both sports.
10 famous footballers who like cricket
That does not mean footballers don't love cricket, though. In the list that we have compiled for you, footballers from not just cricket-playing nations but from countries as far off the sport as Brazil are featured here. We bring you ten famous footballers who like cricket.
#10 Dietmar Hamann
We begin with a surprise pick. Dietmar Hamann is a Liverpool legend who also had an illustrious career for Germany.
Not many know though that the combative midfielder fell in love with cricket during his time in England while watching an Ashes series in 2005. He has reportedly said that footballers can learn etiquette from the sport and once even tried his hand at it at the nets with Andrew Flintoff.
It is reported that once he took this love too far; he gambled and lost a considerable amount of money on the game.
#9 Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain
Now here is a rare modern-day footballer who nearly made it as a cricket pro as well.
Liverpool and England midfielder Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain played as a keeper for South-East Hampshire and was offered a trial with the Hampshire county. The former district cricketer declined it and chose the beautiful game instead but still keenly follows the other sport.
#8 Gary Neville
Another famous footballer who gave up on a promising cricket career, Gary Neville won it all as the right-back of a legendary Manchester United team. But once he shared a 236-run partnership with Matthew Hayden for Greenmount Cricket Club. The two later became greats in their respective sports, but Neville still believes that cricket laid the foundation for his success in football.