5 Cricketers Who Played International Cricket For Two Different Countries
There have been several players who have played international cricket for two different countries, one of their birth, and the other their adopted nation.
The reasons for a player to transfer out of his birth country are variables, but the most common one is the lack of opportunities for a category of players: because of the quota system, it has led a number of prominent South African white players to move away from South Africa and play elsewhere.
Another reason, and quite a common one nowadays, is that as players near their retirement age and find themselves out of the squads, they shift to a different country where they can get into their XI easily.
A few times, players from smaller cricketing nations have also switched to bigger ones with high dreams - some succeed in it - such as Eoin Morgan - mostly others not as much.
Here are 5 renowned cricketers who have played international cricket for two different nations:
The biggest and the most prominent name on this list would be of former England skipper Eoin Morgan, who, in 2019, delivered England their first-ever ODI World Cup trophy.
The Dublin-born Morgan had started his international career with his country of birth, Ireland, and featured in the 2007 ODI World Cup in the green jersey. By 2009, Morgan had decided that he had to take the risk to achieve his dream of winning trophies and playing Test cricket, and shifted his base to England, for whom he played in and helped win the 2010 T20 WC.
Morgan took the captaincy reins in 2015 and changed England’s white-ball cricket’s history and future.
Iftikhar Ali Khan Pataudi
A key figure in the initial years of Indian cricket, Iftikhar Ali Khan Pataudi, the Indian Prince, played Test cricket for two nations. Iftikhar studied in Oxford and was picked up for England in the 1932-33 Ashes where he hit a century on his Ashes and Test debut.
However, after 1934 Ashes, Iftikhar returned to India and was selected to lead the side in the Test series in England in 1936. 10 years later, in 1946, he was again named the skipper of Indian team to tour England and performed his duties, becoming the first, and still only player to play Test cricket for both India and England.
Juan “Rusty” Theron
South African pace sensation Juan Theron, also known as Rusty, played for South Africa and the USA. The right-arm fast bowler made his South Africa ODI and T20I debut in 2010 and even got a gig in the IPL for RR.
But a spate of injuries meant that Theron hanged his boots from international cricket. He moved to the USA, and became eligible to play for the USA in 2019 and soon after made his debut for his new adopted country.
David Wiese made headlines recently when he turned up for Namibia in the T20 World Cups in 2021 and 2022, both the times helping Namibia ace in the qualifying round and proceed to the Super 12.
David Wiese, a former South African player and a marquee T20 all-rounder who has also represented RCB in the IPL, made his white-ball debut for South Africa in 2013, but by 2016, he had decided to take the Kolpak deal and play domestic cricket in England lack of opportunities in the South African team, and also for financial upliftment.
Five years later, he became eligible to play for Namibia, based on ancestry. He made his Namibia debut in the first round of the T20 WC 2021 and helped his new team qualify for the Super 12s, winning two Player-of-the-Match awards on the way. 6 months later, he was part of the Namibia side that won their first series against a Full Member when they beat Zimbabwe 3-2 in a T20I rubber.
Among the recent names to switch countries is Hayden Walsh, the 30-year-old leg-spinner who started out for his birth country, USA, in 2019. But, in search of more and better opportunities in the international arena, Walsh shifted to the West Indies, who called him up for their team after his impressive performances in the CPL.