There are enough examples around the world of leading athletes being in steady, long-term relationships. Tennis star Roger Federer always has wife Mirka courtside. Closer home, Sachin Tendulkar and wife Anjali (they married in 1995) are also upheld as an ideal couple.
But not all love stories are happy. The same holds true for athletes-celebs relationships. As one of India’s top tennis stars, Leander Paes, goes through a bitter court battle with Rhea Pillai (on May 3, Leander filed a petition seeking custody of their eight-year-old daughter, Aiyana), we look at other sportsmen’s troubledrelationships with their celebrity wives or girlfriends.
Yuvraj Singh-Kim Sharma
Status: Broke up after dating for four years
The Mohabbatein (2001) actor dated Yuvraj before calling it quits. Reports suggested that Yuvraj’s mother, Shabnam, didn’t approve of his choice, while others claimed it was Kim’s obsessive and abusive behaviour that led to the break-up (in 2007). Later, Kim was quoted saying there were compatibility issues.
Mohsin Khan-Reena Roy
In 1983, at the height of her stardom, Roy decided to quit films to marry Pakistani cricketer Mohsin Khan. But things didn’t work out. In an interview, Roy said she felt very lonely in London (where she moved) and could not adjust to his lifestyle. Reportedly, she lost custody of their daughter, Sanam, during the divorce, but got it back when Khan remarried.
Mahesh Bhupathi-Shvetha Jaishankar
They were married for seven years before getting divorced in 2010. Their common counsel at that time told PTI that the divorce was granted due to incompatibility between the two. Later, Shvetha, who was a model, had alleged that "their relationship (Mahesh and current wife, Lara Dutta) did start while we were married…". Now, he is married to Lara and has a child.
Mohammed Azharuddin-Sangeeta Bijlani
Status: Apparently separated in 2010
Reportedly, the former Indian cricket captain divorced his first wife, Naureen, once he started dating former Bollywood actress Sangeeta Bijlani. In 2010, Sangeeta apparently walked out of the 14-year-old marriage after his alleged involvement with badminton player Jwala Gutta. Sangeeta now lives in Mumbai.
Zaheer Khan-Isha Sharvani
Status: Dated on-and-off for nearly seven years
Apparently, they started dating in 2005, called it quits in 2007, but got back together in 2010. Amid rumours of their marriage in 2012, Isha said in an interview that they split after a seven-year on-and-off romance. "Yes, we were together for many years. But it is all over between Zaheer and me now," she said.