In the age of populism, it's perhaps no great surprise that politicians across the world see sport as the perfect means of connecting with the electorate. Of course, the reality is that the average sports fan can see through these half-baked attempts to appear as "one of the people" and worse yet for the politicians involved they can often back-fire spectacularly.
Certainly, that was the case last week on Donald Trump's official state visit to India where an ill-advised attempt to praise some of the country's legendary cricketers failed due to Trump's inability to pronounce their names. I assume that the current President of the United States needs most words spelt out phonetically but it didn't seem to help much on this occasion as he butchered the name of Sachin Tendulkar, a man who is practically a living God in his native land.
While Trump may be the latest politician to fail at this gambit he is hardly the first! Beyond just pretending that you have a knowledge of an area or nation's sporting heroes there are those politicians who will go one further and actually pretend to be a fan. While fan's loyalty to their teams can be a little fickle at times, they tend in general to stick with one club unlike former UK Prime Minister David Cameroon who infamously implied that he was a West Ham supporter having previously alluded to being mad on Aston Villa. Perhaps the fact that they play in very similar colours was the confusing part for Mr Cameron but he'll be happy to know that like the UK in general, neither side will be in Europe for foreseeable future despite his support.
Of course, it shouldn't really come as much of a surprise that a politician's loyalty changes with the wind, it's what they do for a living! Here's Hilary Clinton born and bred in Chicago and supposedly a life long Cubs fan donning a New York Yankees hat - oops!
Still, at least the 3 above stayed on the right side of the playing field unlike these buffoons who felt their political stock would rise by demonstrating their sporting prowess.
Watch out there Mr Obama, some people might accuse you of being a little to the left!
Being able to simply smile and shake off these kinds of humiliating incidents is all part and parcel of being a modern politician and we the public love to forgive and forget but surely the warning signs for the British electorate were clear when they saw Boris Johnson running over small children in a touch Rugby game? But no, we thought we'd place our trust in a man who can't control his own body let alone his libido to run the country.
I'd imagine that several senior members of the Conservative Party know just what it feels like to be bundled out of the way in such a roughshod manner by Mr. Johnson.
Politicians - leave the sport to the fans and you get back to doing ... whatever it is is you do.