C.V. Varun, the mystery spinner with 'nine different deliveries'

Varun’s base price was just Rs. 20 lakhs, but he sparked a bidding war between five franchises and went for a whopping 8.4 crore in the 2019 IPL auctions.

Varun Chakravarthy was picked by KXIP for Rs 8.4 crore.   -  R. Ragu

C.V. Varun watched the IPL auction that has transformed his life from his family home in Thanjavur.

“I was with my parents, my sister and my grandparents. I was a little nervous when my name came up,” he admitted to Sportstar on Tuesday.

READ | C.V. Varun : Base price Rs 20 lakh, sold for Rs 8.4 crore

Then, as the bids kept rising, Varun conceded, “I panicked a little. I never thought I would go for so much. Then came a feeling of responsibility for the franchise,” said the 26-year-old Tamil Nadu ‘mystery spinner.

Remarkable turnaround

Varun’s base price was just Rs. 20 lakhs, but he sparked a bidding war between five franchises and went for a whopping 8.4 crore.

The last two years have seen a remarkable turnaround for this spinner with variations; he can send down the leg-spinner, the carrom ball, the leg-cutter, the off-spinner, the flipper, the top-spinner and the arm ball.

Tamil Nadu leg-spinner Varun Chakravarthy impressed during the 2018 TNPL.   -  R.Ragu


Importantly, Varun can get the sphere to turn both ways and has good control for someone so inexperienced. “I can send down nine different kinds of deliveries but I focus on accuracy,” he said.

And bowlers of his ilk are in demand in Twenty20 cricket. There was a buzz around Varun even before the auction.

A golden opportunity

Last year, Varun was languishing in the TNCA fourth division league. A chance opportunity to bowl at some of the Tamil Nadu Ranji batsmen at the nets — he harried them with his turn and bounce — opened pathways for him.

Varun was immensely successful in the two seasons of the Tamil Nadu Premier League, both with his accuracy and various types of deliveries.

IPL 2019 auctions: As it happened

And the IPL talent scouts were watching. Varun was a net bowler for Kolkata Knight Riders last season, went for trails with Mumbai Indians this year.

Fast tracked into the Tamil Nadu team, he impressed during the Vijay Hazare one-day tournament earning respect from the opposition.    

The lanky spinner with a high-arm action actually began as a paceman but switched to spin. His favourite spinner is Stuart MacGill. “I admired him. He used to get the ball to spin and turn so much.”

And he is excited about playing under R. Ashwin in Kings XI Punjab. “I am looking forward to it. I can learn so much from him.”

Varun is all set to fly in the IPL.

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