CHENNAI: I had complained once before. Hopefully, they’ll fix it now.” They — read Tamil Nadu Cricket Association — should. The name of Varun Chakaravarthy, formerly identified as Varun Chakravathi V on a regular basis, ought to gain more mileage among Tamil Nadu’s cricketing circles. After all, it will now feature for the first time in the state’s roster for the upcoming Vijay Hazare Trophy. “I wasn’t expecting to be called up, but my teammates (Vijay CC) thought that I would be after this Tamil Nadu Premier League (TNPL),” remarked the 27-year-old mystery spinner.
His teammates were right in sussing Varun’s chances of inclusion. After all, that TNPL stint had been one of the majorreasons for Siechem Madurai Panthers clinching the title. Ten matches, nine wickets, and an economy of just 4.7 in a T20 league are numbers that do make for an impressive read. That wasn’t just a flash-inthe- pan streak, as the Kotturpuram resident carried on that run-limiting misery into VAP Memorial Trophy for his club Vijay CC.
Ten wickets may not be that much, but his economy of 3.65 was second best for those who’d sent down at least 60 overs in the event. These two solid outings were all that the journeyman — Varun’s an architect, and he has also been a nets bowler for Chennai Super Kings and Kolkata Knight Riders — needed to make an impression on the state’s selectors. “From TNPL and from the time that I spent with both CSK and KKR, my biggest takeaway in terms of developing my bowling was accuracy. Those stints taught me how to execute my plans with the ball on a regular basis,” explained Varun. “I had to quickly adapt my bowling during VAP, as it happened right after TNPL.
That will be helpful for my Vijay Hazare preparations, because changing gears from 20 overs to 50 overs requires a larger degree of consistency while bowling variations. That’s what I’ll focus during the practice sessions before the tournament.” According to Varun, Rahil Shah (also a part of the state’s squad) will be one the fulcrums in the dressing room on whom his maiden List A sojourn will pivot. “He’s a very experienced spinner, and he gave me a lot of inputs during TNPL (even Rahil turned out for Madurai). I’m looking forward to learning more from him during the tournament.”