Navjot Singh Sidhu

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Navjot Singh Sidhu

Navjot Singh Sidhu (born October 20, 1963) is a former Indian cricket batsman, who took up television commentary and, more recently, politics following his retirement from the game. He was born in Patiala in Punjab. Sidhu was elected to the Lok Sabha from Amritsar in 2004,2007 (by-election) and 2009 on a Bharatiya Janata Party ticket. [1]

Cricketing career

Navjot Singh Sidhu

Navjot Singh Sidhu had a volatile international career from 1983 to 1999

He made an uneventful international debut against the West Indies at Ahmedabad in 1983 scoring just 19 runs in his debut Test match. He was given another chance in that series but failed again. He was selected for the 1987 cricket World Cup in India scoring 73 on his One-day International debut in a losing effort against Australia. He scored 50s in 4 of the 5 World Cup 1987 matches in which he batted, failing in the semifinal against England. His maiden ODI century came against Pakistan in Sharjah in 1989 while his 134 against England at Gwalior in 1993 was his highest ODI score and the innings which he called his best when he retired in 1999.

It was during the later part of his career that he was recognised as a mediocre Test batsman when he scored over 500 Test runs in a year thrice (1993, 1994 and 1997). His only Test double century came during India's 1997 tour of West Indies. In 1994, he scored 885 ODI runs.

He announced his retirement from all forms of cricket in December 1999. He played over 50 Test matches and over 100 ODIs scoring over 7,000 international runs at an average of 42.13 [2] for tests and 37.08 [3]for ODIs. He has 27 centuries to his credit in a 18 year career.

Some of the nicknames he earned were "Sixer Sidhu", Sherry and "Jonty Singh" (with respect to his improved fielding in his late career, Jonty Rhodes being the best fielder at that time.) Toward the end of his career, when his form went belly-up he became known as "Puttu", a name that has carried on to his commentary career.

Commentator and TV Personality

Navjot Singh Sidhu

Sidhu started his career as a commentator for NIMBUS when India toured Sri Lanka in 2001. He however later became a commentator with ESPN-Star. He had a brash & outspoken style with his all-too-(in)famous & meaningless Sidhuisms. However, he took his outspoken style a bit too far and was sacked by ESPN-Star around August 2003 - allegedly for using the F-Word on air. Subsequent to his sacking, he took his act to commentate for Ten Sports. He also regularly appears as a "cricket analyst" on various local Indian channels. Of late he also figured as a judge on a television program - "The Great Indian Laughter Challenge".

Cyrus Sahukar hosts a program on MTV "Piddhu the Great" where he is disguised as Piddhu, a lookalike of Sidhu. The one-liners in the program, similar to Sidhuisms, are called "Pidhuisms".


Sidhu won on a Bharatiya Janata Party ticket from the Amritsar seat in the Indian general elections, 2004, 2007 and 2009.

Manslaughter Charges

Sidhu was accused of causing the death of a Gurnam Singh on December 27, 1988 in an incident of road rage. On 22 September, 1999, the district and sessions court at Patiala acquitted Sidhu in the case registered under Section 304 and 34 IPC. The Punjab & Haryana High Court, found him guilty and convicted him under Sec 304 of IPC. However, the decision was stayed by the Supreme court giving credence to the trial courts findings. The Supreme court maintained that the FIR did not specifically mention that Mr. Sidhu dealt a blow to 65-year-old Gurnam Singh, nor did medical evidence conclusively establish that the victim died as a result of the blow in the head.[4]