Regarded as a wily cricket captain during his international playing days, Imran Khan found himself on a sticky wicket when it came to leading Pakistan.
The 69-year-old prime minister was ousted on Sunday following a no-confidence motion in the national assembly, days after he thought he had stymied the opposition by dissolving parliament and calling an early election.
The Supreme Court ruled his action illegal on Thursday, and having lost his majority in the assembly, Khan ran out of options.
Khan enjoyed genuine popular support when he became premier in 2018, but critics say he has failed to deliver on promises to revitalise the economy and improve the lives of the poor.
Khan’s Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party was voted in by millions who grew up watching him play cricket, where he excelled as an all-rounder and captained Pakistan to World Cup victory in 1992.
The PTI overturned decades of dominance by the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and Pakistan Muslim League-N (PML-N) – two usually feuding groups that joined forces to oust him.
Often described as being impulsive and brash, Khan draws frequently on cricket analogies to describe his political battles.
“I fight till the very last ball. I never quit whatever the result may be,” he said in an address to the nation last week.
On Sunday, he was dismissed.
© Agence France-Presse