Sania-Shoaib divorce: Old interviews with cricketer, Ayesha Omar, others add fuel to fire

Fans speculate cricketer's past controversial interviews were a hint towards a new, brimming romance

Entertainment Desk January 22, 2024

After months of circulating rumours about tension in their relationship, Pakistani cricketer Shoaib Malik and former Indian tennis player Sania Mirza have formally ended their marriage. The unexpected revelation came to light when Malik announced his marriage to Pakistani actor Sana Javed on Saturday.

An official statement from Mirza's family on Sunday clarified that the couple had actually divorced several months ago. The public has been abuzz with curiosity about the reasons behind the breakup of this high-profile cross-border celebrity couple. As per Indian news outlets, the cricketer’s family has expressed disapproval of the union.

Fan speculations

Amidst speculation about Malik's fidelity, various clips from old interviews and guest appearances on TV of the sportsman have resurfaced, adding fuel to the fire. Many internet users are circulating clips of Malik and Javed from when they shared the screen on a game show with host Fahad Mustafa in March 2023.

The clips show the two celebrities participating in the show’s segments together and engaging in banter. During one game, Javed can be seen intently focused on winning while Malik playfully urges her to give up. In another instance of the game show going viral, the actor expressed, “Shoaib just told me that he’s in a mood to win but is deliberately losing for me.” While in another segment, Malik chivalrously offers to push a bike on his own instead of taking Javed’s help.

Badami, Khan weigh in

Multiple X users are resharing these clips while jokingly crediting Mustafa for first bringing the newlyweds together. However, the couple first met on Mustafa’s game show in 2021’s Eid special episode. The encounter, which spawned rumours of Malik’s extra-marital affair, was hinted at by news anchor and host Waseem Badami in another recently resurfaced clip from The Express Entertainment’s talk show Time Out with Ahsan Khan.

Airing in July, 2021, Badami appeared as a guest alongside Shaista Lodhi, and candidly remarked on Malik’s speculated romance in conversation with Khan. “Shoaib, I am hearing a lot of gossip,” the news anchor stated cryptically while the Fraud actor nodded in agreement and added, “Especially in this last tour to Pakistan.”

Badami went on to say, “I’ll just ask Bhabi (Sania) to check if Shoaib came here for Jeeto Pakistan or did he also win some hearts…Please, you should check this.” In response, Lodhi casually asserted that the two male celebrities were projecting based on their “bad records.”

Contributing to the timeline of events, internet users have pulled out Malik’s post on X from March, 2022, where the cricketer penned a short note for his present wife. “ I have known Sana Javed for quite some time now and have had the opportunity to work with her multiple times,” Malik began, praising her polite conduct with people. “From my personal experience, I can only say that she has always been kind and courteous towards me and the people around us.”

In light of recent events, social media users are regarding Malik’s post with suspicion now with many quoting the post with copypastas replacing Javed’s name with that of their celebrity crushes. From Zayn Malik to Andrew Garfield, the emerging meme format nods at a poor attempt to veil true affections.

Sizzling photoshoot with Ayesha Omar

The new wave of controversy has also shifted attention to Malik’s suspected romance with Pakistani actor Ayesha Omar after the two collaborated on a provocative photoshoot in 2021. While many are pondering whether those theories held any truth, Omar’s appearance at Shoaib Akhtar’s talk show in early 2023 is making rounds on the internet as well.

Addressing the matter, Omar set the record straight, “I would never be attracted to a married or committed man ever. Everyone knows me and that goes without saying.” The Bulbulay star further mentioned that the speculations initially surfaced in the media across the border and were subsequently picked up by outlets in Pakistan.

And the plot thickens...

Another old clip in the mix finds Malik seated as a guest in a November 2023 episode of former cricketer Shoaib Akhtar's talk show on The Express Entertainment. In the clip, Akhtar questioned Malik about five attractive women from any field. In response, Malik expressed how he generally finds himself captivated by women, pointing out the difficulty in naming just a few.

“Five? There are five hundred!” the sportsman exclaimed laughingly. “I like women a lot, from all over the world, but five names I think won’t be enough,” he added. Malik elaborated on his preference for connecting with women, asserting that forming bonds with them feels more natural to him compared to establishing camaraderie with men.

“Let me tell you something fun: I get along better with women than men,” the former national captain disclosed. When probed as to why that might be the case, Malik jokingly remarked, “Apparently, I look like a woman myself.”

Considering the cricketer’s refusal to name five women, Akhtar persisted in the spirit of the Q/A segment and listed names of famous women from Pakistani showbiz. “You’ll end my friendship with the other ten,” Malik interjected with a laugh, before repeating his original stance. “All women are nice.”

While many names from showbiz have flocked to the couple’s Insta post to shower well wishes, the marriage has also ignited thinly veiled musings from some, reflecting on love and the sanctity of marriage.

Veteran actor Resham took to her official Insta handle to share a poignant query: “The height of love then marriage, then weariness and an ever-widening sea of separation, is marriage in today’s age a flop show? What do you think?”

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