I-Day special: Meet the cricketers who have played for both India & Pakistan
- Gul Mohammad played 8 Tests for India and represented Pakistan in one match after the partition
- Abdul Hafeez Kardar made his Test debut for India at Lord’s Cricket Ground in 1946 and was Pakistan's first Test captain
- Amir Elahi played his first Test for India in 1947 and would go on to play 5 for Pakistan
August 14 and 15 hold great significance in the history of the Indian subcontinent. On those days in 1947, the peninsula nation was divided into two parts into two new countries – India and Pakistan – as the British rule over the region ended.
Great social unrest and communal violence followed in the hours after the partition, with millions slaughtered as they tried to cross over from one country to another. Hindus tried to get across to India, while Muslims tried to get to Pakistan and in that process, millions were slaughtered.
The partition affected every walk of life, with sports no exception. And with both countries being obsessed with cricket, the sport is bound to see some fallout from those events. India began playing Test cricket in 1932 and some included some players who later switched their allegiances to Pakistan, who entered the Test format in 1952.
The rivalry between the two neighbours have made for some of the most iconic stories in the sport’s history. The political tensions between these two countries often simmered over on the field of play, with both teams carrying more than sporting incentives to defeat the other.
As both countries celebrate their 75th Independence Day, here is a look at the few cricketers who have the distinction of having represented both India and Pakistan in Test cricket:
Gul Mohammad played eight Tests for India and represented Pakistan in one match after the partition, his first and last, in 1956. A popular star in the Ranji scene, Mohammad was known as an energetic fielder and also was a renowned kabaddi player and swimmer. He retired from cricket in 1959.
Abdul Hafeez Kardar made his Test debut for India at Lord’s Cricket Ground in 1946 and scored 43. However, he chose to play for Pakistan after Partition, and was their first Test captain in 1952, when he led them against India. Interestingly, Gul was playing for Indian and against his future team-mates that day. Kardar retired in 1957.
The leg-spinner played his first Test for India in 1947 and would go on to play five for Pakistan. He had the distinction of being cap no #1 among Pakistan cricketers.