Link ups: Bollywood stars and Sports stars

The love affair between Bollywood actress Anushka Sharma and cricketer Virat Kholi has been buzzing in the media for some time now. It is also rumored that, taking a cue from B-Town lovebirds Ranbir Kapoor and Katrina Kaif, Virat and Anushka have moved in together in an apartment near Annuska’s house in Mumbai. Grapevine also has it that the duo will tie the knot by the end of 2015.

If it turns out to be true, then the couple will join the league of sports personalities and Bollywood celebs whose relationships culminated to marriage.

Many cricketers and individuals from other sports as well, have found love in the Indian entertainment industry, but not all of them met with happy ending.

The most exemplary relationship of Bollywood and Cricket is that of the late Mansoor Ali Khan aka Tiger Pataudi and one of the most beautiful actresses of her times Sharmila Tagore. Tiger wooed his lady love for almost four years and then they got married after persuading their opposing parents. They were the first such couple who made the association of Bollywood with cricket and lived a successful married life till Tiger left for his heavenly abode in 2011.

During the early 1980s, actress Reena Roy who was at the peak of her career and fame, decided to quit films and got married to Pakistani Cricketer Mohsin Khan. The cricketer also tried his luck in Bollywood and did movies like ‘Batwara’ by J.P Dutta and Mahesh Bhatt’s ‘Saathi’. Both of them also have a daughter. But things didn’t work out for them and they eventually got divorced. After Mohsin got married again to someone else, the actress regained the custody of their daughter from him.

Former Indian skipper Mohammad Azharuddin who is one of the most successful captains of Indian cricket, got involved in a romantic relationship with model actress Sangeeta Bijlani. The cricketer divorced his wife with whom he had two sons, to tie the knot with Sangeeta. However, after 14 years of marriage, they separated in 2010. Meanwhile, Azhar’s youngest son passed away in a road accident in 2011.

Interestingly, a biopic on Azharuddin is being made in Bollywood where actor Emraan Hashmi would be playing the cricketer’s role.

There were also relationships that did not see the light of marriage. For instance, the dashing Pakistani cricketer Imran Khan and the gorgeous Zeenat Aman had dated each other, but their affair was very short lived.

Ravi Shastri, who was the eye-candy of girls in his hey days, was going around with Amrita Singh. But their love affair didn’t work and they parted ways.  

Anju Mahendroo and Windies player Sir Gary Sobers were also having an affair, but their relationship was opposed by Anju’s parents and therefore, they ended their relation. Neena Gupta too shared an intimate relation with Sir Vivian Richards, also from West Indies, and has a love child who is now a well known fashion designer. But they did not marry, as Viv was already married.

In the recent past, Zaheer Khan and Isha Sharvani, Yuvraj Singh and Kim Sharma, and Harbhajan Singh and Geeta Basra were also dating each other but eventually parted ways due to familial pressure and other reasons. Kamal Hassan’s daughter and Suresh Raina were also said to be in a relationship.

There were also rumors linking up Saurav Ganguly and Nagma, Sachin Tendulkar and Shilpa Shirodkar, Sushmita Sen and Wasim Akram, and also M. S. Dhoni and Deepika Padukone.

Individuals from other sports have also found their partners in the film Industry.

Ace Tennis player Leander Paes is married to model-turned-actress Reah Pillai, and they have a daughter together. While Reah was earlier married to Sanjay Dutt, Leander was said to be in a relationship with Mahima Chaudhary.

Leander’s doubles partner Mahesh Bhupati divorced his wife to get married to actress and former Miss Universe Lara Dutta. Both of them also have a daughter.

Chitrangada Singh found her life partner in golfer Jyoti Randhawa. They got married and had a son. But they parted ways in 2013 and got divorced.

Neha Dhupia also dated squash player Ritwik Bhattacharya but they split in 2010. Ritwik later got married to model Pia Trivedi.

Meanwhile, Actress Taapsee Pannu who appeared in the 2015 thriller ‘Baby’ and shuttler Mathias Boe of Denmark are seeing each other. Both had met during the second edition of the Indian Badminton league held in 2014. 

Wrestler Sangram Singh and Payel Rohatgi are also romantically involved. They have taken part in the celebrity dance reality show ‘Nach Baliye 7’. Both were also seen in reality show ‘Big Boss’ in different editions of the programme.