Life is a lot about second chances. Ask Varun Chakravarthy.
When the mystery spinner from Tamil Nadu pulled out of IPL 2019 after just one game because of a shoulder strain, his dreams appeared to go up in smoke.
Kings XI Punjab snapped him up after a bidding war that saw his worth soar from a base price of Rs. 20 L to a mind-boggling Rs. 8.4 CR.
And then, amid huge expectations, he made a swift and agonising injury-driven exit. Chakravarthy appeared to stare at a dark future.
It is in this context that the 29-year-old Chakravarthy’s successes for Kolkata Knight Riders in the ongoing IPL is a heart-warming tale of hope and redemption.
He has been turning the ball both ways and his deliveries - released from a high-arm action - have been laced with bounce.
Sunrisers captain David Warner was flummoxed by a delivery, ficked off the middle-finger, that held its line when the batsman played for turn.
And Rajasthan Royals southpaw Rahul Tewatia was done in by a delivery that pitched on leg and hit the top of middle-stump.
As Tamil Nadu’s captain in the game’s shorter versions, Dinesh Karthik comprehended Chakravarthy’s worth. But first, the cricketer had to get fit and so he enrolled himself in ace trainer Shankar Basu’s Primal Patterns.
He then underwent sessions under Karthik and Abhishek Nayar to strengthen his mind. In the auction for this year’s IPL edition, Karthik played an influential role as Chakravarthy was roped in for Rs. 4 crore. He has certainly had his moments in the UAE with the league now in full swing.
Chakravarthy, who was languishing in the TNCA fourth division league in 2018-19, impressed Tamil Nadu’s Ranji batsmen with his bowling variations in the nets.
His repertoire included a leg-spinner, the carrom ball, the leg-cutter, the off-spinner, the flipper, the top-spinner and the arm ball. Maturity and a calm mind are the latest additions and they are serving him well.
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