It is widely known that Bollywood and the sport of Cricket share a very deep connection. Cricketers marrying movie stars, actors visiting stadiums to cheer their favourite teams/players or the movie industry creating greater sports films. Everything is done at a huge scale.
And not just that, our Indian cricketers have also tried their hands on acting, appearing in various films. Sportsmen like Kapil Dev, Shiakr Dhawan, Salil Ankola, Vinod Kambli, Sreesanth and many more are featured in movies.
Have a look at the list:
1. Salil Ankola
A very successful cricketer Salil Ankola also appeared in many films and made his cinematic debut in 2000 with the Hindi film Kurukshetra. Adding on in several films like Pitaah, Chura Liyaa Hai Tumne, Silence Please…The Dressing Room, Riwayat, etc. and not just that, he has done a number of daily soaps too! Kora Kagaz, Rishtey, Noorjahan, Vikraal Aur Gabraal and many more. Salil has also done reality shows like Bigg Boss, Fear Factor India, Box Cricket League 1, etc.
2. Kapil Dev
The legendary Indian captain Kapil Dev is a master on the field and after retirement from cricket, he has graced several films through his presence for cameo roles. In Movies like Mujse Shaadi Karogi, Iqbal, Chain Kulii Ki Main Kulii, 83 and Double XL.
3. Salim Durani
The first cricketer to win the Arjuna Award, Salim Durani was famous for his six-hitting prowess. He has appeared alongside prominent actress Praveen Babi for the 1973 film ‘Charitra’.
4. Sunil Gavaskar
Being hailed as one of the greatest opening batsmen of all time, Sunil Gavaskar has acted in films too. Appearing in the Marathi film ‘Savli Premachi’, a guest role in the Hindi movie ‘Maalamaal’. Apart from acting, the cricketer has also sung a Marathi song ‘Ya Duniyemadhye Thambayaala Vel Konala’.
5. Ajay Jadeja
Ajay Jadeja acted in movies like ‘Khel’ alongside Sunny Deol and Suniel Shetty, and also has a 2009 film ‘Pal Pal Dil Ke Ssaat’. He also made a cameo appearance as a cricket commentator in ‘Kai Po Che!’
6. Vinod Kambli
As an actor, Vinod Kambli featured in Hindi films like Annarth, and Pal Pal Dil Ke Ssaat and he has also done a Kannada movie titled ‘Bettanagere’. Not just silver screen, he made his television debut through DD National’s serial ‘Miss India’ in 2002 and he was also a part of the reality show ‘Bigg Boss’.
7. Syed Kirmani
Syed Kirmani is considered the heart of the 1983 World Cup squad. Trying his hands on acting, he has appeared in various language films. Syed featured in an Indian musical film ‘Kabhie Ajnabi The’, a Kannada film ‘Deadly-2’ and also has a Malayalam film ‘Mazhavillinattam Vare’.
8. Anil Kumble
One of the best leg-spin bowlers Anil Kumble made an acting cameo appearance in Chandrakant Kulkarni’s ‘Meerabai Not Out’.
9. Sandeep Patil
After a massive win in the 1983 World Cup by our Indian cricket team, Sandeep Patil was offered a lead role opposite two actresses Poonam Dillon and Debashree Roy in ‘Kabhie Ajnabi The’. In which Syed Kirmani played an antagonist.
10. Sadagoppan Ramesh
Sadagoppan Ramesh is widely known for being an Indian cricketer to takes a wicket off his first ball in ODI cricket and has acted in Tamil movies. In 2008 film ‘Santosh Subramaniam’ and a lead role in the movie 'Potta Potti’.
11. Harbhajan Singh
India’s one of the best spinners of his era, Harbhajan Singh is a great television personality too and also appeared in various language of movies. Made special appearances in Mujhse Shaadi Karogi, Second Hand Husband, a Punjabi film ‘Bhaji in Problem’ and also made a Cameo appearance in a Tamil film ‘Dikkiloona’. Not only that he has a lead role in the Tamil film ‘Friendship’.
12. Yograj Singh
Yograj Singh is a cricketer, who has gained more popularity in acting than in his sports career. Yuvraj Singh's father’s cricket career came to an end due to an injury, then he entered Punjabi and Hindi cinema. Worked in 30 Punjabi movies, played a coach of Milkha Singh in Bollywood film ‘Bhaag Milkha Bhaag’, also featured in Teen Thay Bhai, Singh Is Bling, Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui and many more. He was also seen in a Tamil movie Thalaivar Rajinikanth’s ‘Darbar’ and he still continues to act in films.
13. Yuvraj Singh
An all-rounder of the Indian cricket team, not as an adult but Yuvraj Singh has in a Punjabi film as a child artist named Mehndi Shagna Di. Apart from acting, he has also given voice to a character in the animated film ‘Jumbo’.
14. S. Sreesanth
Sreesanth made his acting debut through Hindi film ‘Aksar 2’, then appeared in Cabaret. Also, acted in different South films like the Malayalam film ‘Team 5’, the Tamil movie ‘Kaathuvaakula Rendu Kaadhal’ and a Kannada film ‘Kempe Gowda 2’ for which he also won a Best Villain Award at the Santosham Film Awards. Apart from the silver screen, he has a great television career too. Participating in Ek Khiladi Ek Haseena, Jhalak Dikhhla Jaa 7, Bigg Boss 12, Khatron Ke Khiladi 9, etc. and also judged various shows.
15. Sachin Tendulkar
The Master Blaster of cricket, Sachin Tendulkar was prominently featured in his own biographical documentary ‘Sachin: A Billion Dreams’, directed by James Erskine.
16. Irfan Pathan
An all-rounder cricketer Irfan Pathan made a cameo appearance in Mujhse Shaadi Karogi, and made his Tamil acting debut with Ajay Gnanamuthu’s film ‘Cobra’.