13 Must know facts about Navjot Singh Sidhu!
#Navjot Singh Sidhu (52) is one of the most talented and gutsy cricketers India has produced. Sidhu represented India for 12 years till 1999 and then became a popular love-him-or-hate-him commentator, known for his witty one-liners – Sidhuisms. These often funny Sidhuisms got him a lucrative career on TV, especially in TV Comedy shows. He knows how to keep himself in news and in his fans’ hearts
Let’s get to know the talented but maverick Sidhu even better with these 13 must-know facts about him.
2: Strokeless Sidhu
Sidhu made his debut in November 1983 but was excluded from the India team after just first two matches. Then an Indian Express columnist in a scathing article wrote “Sidhu: The Strokeless”. Sidhu kept that article with him to inspire himself. He used to wake up at 4 am for practice and hit hundreds of sixes every day till his hands bled.
Eventually Sidhu made a sensational return in the Indian team for the 1987 Reliance World Cup, where he hit four fifties in a row, a world record till date. Thereafter, the same columnist, Rajan Bala, wrote another article headlined, “Sidhu: From Strokeless Wonder To A Palm-Grove Hitter. What A Change!”
3: First ODI century
Sidhu’s first century in One-Day Internationals came against Pakistan in Champions Trophy of 1989 at Sharjah. He scored 108 off 121 balls with eight boundaries and one six. Though India lost the match by six wickets but Sidhu was declared the man of the match.
4: ODI career
Navjot Singh Sidhu played 136 ODIs scoring 4413 runs at an average of 37 with 6 centuries. He made a career best of 134 not out against England at Gwalior in March 1993, when as an opener Sidhu carried his bat through to help India chase a stiff 257 runs target.
5: Mid-trip Return
In the 1996 tour of England, following a misunderstanding with the captain Azharuddin, Sidhu left the team and returned home. Sidhu was castigated for his action but he did not look back.
6: Slowest Double Century
Sidhu could still become a wall whenever needed. Sidhu scored the slowest double century by any Indian batsman (fifth overall). He scored 201 in 491 balls spending 673 minutes at crease, his only double hundred in a 51 Tests career in the second Test against West Indies in March 1996. Sidhu once again was the man of the match in the drawn match.
7: Made for each other Couple
Sidhu and his wife, Dr Navjot Sidhu, shares the same first name.. A professional doctor, Mrs Sidhu resigned from the Punjab Health Department in January 2012 to join politics. They have a son and daughter named Karan and Rabia.
Sidhu started commentating for cricket matches post his retirement from international cricket in 1999. His one liners, known as Sidhuisms, set him apart from all other commentators and brought him a cult following.
Sidhu’s family has been staunch Congress but Sidhu entered politics by joining Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) and contested in the Indian general elections of 2004 from #Amritsar seat. Later, he had to resign from his post in 2006 because of a case against him in which he was found guilty and sentenced for three-year prison for culpable homicide of Gurnam Singh in a case of road rage. Later Supreme Court in 2007 stayed his conviction and allowed him to contest election. He won again. Sidhu is having a rethink on his political career and may join Aam Admi Party (AAP) soon.
Along with cricket, commentary and politics, Sidhu could also find time to appear in movies as well as Television shows. His first guest appearance was in the movie Mujhse Shaadi Karogi in 2004 and then in 2008 in a Punjabi movie Mera Pind. Beside movies, Sidhu had long-term appearance in two renowned comedy shows of India named Laughter Challenge along with Shekhar Suman in 2007 and superhit Comedy Nights with Kapil.
11: Big Boss
Sidhu was also a part of the reality show Big Boss in 2012 but he had to pull out from the show midway due to elections.
Sidhu’s family and friends call him ‘Sherry. His own Twitter handle is @sherryontopp, followed by lakhs of fans. He was also called ‘Sixer Sidhu’ for his propensity to hit sixers, especially to spinners.
How many of you know that despite most Punjabi’s love for chicken, Sidhu is a pure vegetarian.