Former Indian batsman joins the Jana Sena Party
He represented the Men in Blue in 16 matches, in which he managed 218 runs at an average of 24.22.
Updated - Jun 29, 2018 12:02 am
Indian cricket, over the years, has had a number of cricketers, who went on to ply their trade in politics. The likes of Mohammad Azharuddin, Mohammad Kaif, Kirti Azad, Navjot Singh Sidhu and Praveen Kumar have previously been a part of the political fraternity for renowned parties. Recently, another player has been added to the elite list.
Venugopal Rao, the former Indian batsman, has joined the Jana Sena Party, which was founded by Telegu actor Pawan Kalyan on March 14, 2014. He met the chief of the party today and agreed to be a part of it. Former Chairman of BC Corporation Kona Tata Rao, industrialist Konathala Sitaram, and many other prominent names also joined the party.
Venugopal’s short-lived career
Rao’s cricketing career for India was fleeting. In 2005, he made his ODI debut versus Sri Lanka in Dambulla. His stint in national colours didn’t even last for a year as he played his last ODI on May 23, 2006, against the Windies. His highest score of 61 not out was versus Pakistan in Abu Dhabi. The knock also happened to be his only half-century in the Indian jersey.
All in all, he represented the Men in Blue in 16 matches, in which he managed 218 runs at an average of 24.22. He also played in the cash-rich Indian Premier League for the Deccan Chargers, Delhi Daredevils, and the Sunrisers Hyderabad. He played 65 matches in the event and scored 985 runs with three half-centuries. His last match in the IPL was back in 2014, which also was his last T20 appearance.
At the first-class level, he made his debut back in the 1998/99 season for Gujarat and played for them till 2015. He made a shift to Andhra Pradesh and came back to play one Ranji match for them in October 2017. In 121 first-class games, the 36-year old has 7081 runs with 17 centuries under his belt. He also has 4110 runs and 11 tons in 137 List A matches for Gujarat.