Varun Chakravarthy, who was sold to KXIP for Rs 8.4 crore, had almost quit cricket

first_imgIndian Premier League’s latest millionaire, Varun Chakravarthy was like many other aspiring young cricketers in the country. He had watched a lot of cricket during school, played a lot of backyard cricket with the tennis ball but gave up on his dreams when he had to choose between a safer career option and cricket.Varun Chakravarthy says he didn’t see a future in cricket and had very little time to continue playing the sport when he joined architecture in one of the top colleges in Chennai.Unlike many other Indian households, Varun Chakravarthy’s parents didn’t force him into five years of rigorous college life. Varun says he wanted to become an architect and was thinking about designing and building houses back then.Varun insists his parents have never gone against his life decisions. That’s why the ex-architect could wake up one fine morning and decide he would give another shot at becoming a professional cricketer without worrying about what his parents would make of his seemingly irrational decision.”At that point, I was thinking about how to design houses. I didn’t see a future in cricket. That’s why I went into architecture. I wanted to become an architect. But after two years into my job, I asked myself if I hadn’t put my heart and soul into my first love, cricket. That’s when I thought I will return to the game,” Varun told indiatoday.in.”I woke up one fine morning and had this thought. It was unforeseen. I was a bit frustrated with my job.”advertisement’Cricket was not even part of my routine during those 7 years’During his time away from cricket, even watching matches on television didn’t interest him. Varun says he loved travelling and hanging around with his friends but not following cricket. He says he didn’t have the urge to even watch cricket as he believed he didn’t “belong there”.”Cricket was not part of my routine during those seven years. I was focussed on my work. Designing ate up a lot of my time. I was just playing a bit of tennis ball cricket but not professional cricket. I didn’t even watch cricket matches often. During my school days, I watched a lot of cricket but after I stopped playing, I didn’t have the urge to watch cricket because I felt I don’t belong there,” Varun added.Varun’s parents are happy now. So are his friends. The 27-year-old from Tamil Nadu triggered a bidding war at the recently-concluded IPL 2019 auction in Jaipur. Chennai Super Kings, Kolkata Knight Riders, and Kings XI Punjab were involved an in a three-way race for the “mystery spinner”.Varun and his parents were witnessing the war from in front of their television screen. His base price was Rs 20 lakh but he was eventually sold to KXIP for Rs Rs 8.4 crore. Varun is excited he is going to share the dressing room with his senior teammate and India’s premier off-spinner, R Ashwin.”I felt very happy. I didn’t expect to get this much in the auction. I am very excited because he [Ashwin] is from the same state. When I had met him in the past, we didn’t discuss a lot about bowling, it was all general. But now I am hoping to learn a lot from him,” Varun said.”I have spoken to Ashwin [after the auction]. He welcomed me to Kings XI Punjab.”Varun rose to fame during his stint with Siechem Madurai Panthers in Tamil Nadu Premier League (TNPL) 2018. In 10 matches, the “mystery spinner” picked up only nine wickets but opposition batsmen struggled to put bat to ball against him.With close to seven different variations, Varun bowled 40 overs out of which 20.5 were dots.With a miserly economy rate of 4.70, he played a key role in the Panthers title-winning run. Before the last season, the Madurai-based team didn’t manage to win a single match, stitching a 15-match winless streak over two years.Unsurprisingly, Varun was called up to play for the Tamil Nadu state team in Vijay Hazare Trophy 2018. He finished the campaign with 22 wickets, the second most in the tournament behind left-arm spinner Shahbaz Nadeem.C V Varun spun a web in TNPL 2018. Will the batters be able to decode his magic in #IPL2019? pic.twitter.com/ha2aCjicdtTNPL (@TNPremierLeague) December 19, 2018’Imran Tahir told me to keep working on my skills’ Trials with IPL teams, including CSK and KKR followed. Quite a few, including Imran Tahir were impressed with the youngster’s performances. Varun says Tahir noted his showings and offered him valuable tips.advertisement”I was selected for TNPL last year. I didn’t get a lot of opportunities at Karaikudi Kalais. A video analyst called Hari only spotted me and referred me to the team. This year, I played for Madurai Panthers,” Varun said.”This year, I had the opportunity to bowl at CSK nets. I was very happy. I got that opportunity through TS Mohan sir. I bowled to a lot of batsmen. 15 days after the trail, I got a call from Kolkata Knight Riders. I bowled at all the CSK batsmen. Everyone told me that I am bowling well.”Imran Tahir took me separately and told me to keep working on my skills. He was sharing his experience. Even now I message him sometimes, he finds the time to reply.”When he resumed playing club cricket after college, Varun was the not the highly-rated mystery spinner he is today. The tall youngster was bowling medium pace.However, a knee injury in 2016 forced him to reassess his plans. Varun decided he would bowl spin. He reportedly downgraded himself and played fourth-division cricket despite getting offers from second division and first division clubs in Tamil Nadu.Varun worked on his skills and developed all the variations over the last one year after resuming life as a cricketer by bowling spin. Little did he imagine, his bold decisions would pay him off, handsomely, a year later.Varun is excited but at the same time isn’t putting pressure on himself ahead of his maiden IPL stint. He says he wants to contribute as much as he can. He once again wants to become an architect, this time at Kings XI Punjab.”I want to contribute as much as I can. I hope that we can win this IPL and we play some part in it,” Varun signed off.Also Read | No relation between IPL price tag and my hunger to play for India again: Jaydev UnadkatAlso Read | Why Yuvraj Singh wasn’t upset after remaining unsold in 1st roundAlso Read | Can MI’s old war horses, Malinga and Yuvraj come good?Also See:last_img

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