'Called Karthik for advice a day before match. He was commentating in England': India spinner Varun Chakravarthy
- Karthik had just finished his commentary duties in England-Sri Lanka series and was gearing for his stint with The Hundred, when Chakravarthy decided to call him up for some advice on the eve of his India debut.
Dinesh Karthik the captain and man manager often doesn’t get the credit like Karthik the keeper-batsman or even of late Karthik the commentator does. But ask those like Varun Chakravarthy, who have played under him at the early stages of their careers, and you get an entirely different picture of how captain Karthik has had a huge role to play in their careers.
Chakravarthy, who was spotted by Karthik in the Tamil Nadu Premier League and subsequently picked up by Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), the franchise which Karthik used to lead then, said he called the wicketkeeper-batsman before his debut match in Sri Lanka.
Karthik had just finished his commentary duties in England-Sri Lanka series and was gearing for his stint with The Hundred, when Chakravarthy decided to call him up for some advice.
"I called him the day before the match and asked him because he was commentating on the England-Sri Lanka series also. He did give me a few inputs. He shared his observations on where to bowl and how to bowl and how the Sri Lankan players play and those kinds of things." Chakravarthy told ESPNCricinfo.
Chakravarthy, who has made a name for himself as a mystery spinner, made his T20I debut in Sri Lanka and ended up playing all three matches in the series.
The 29-year-old said it was a dream come true but he wasn’t blinded by emotions.
"Paras Mhambrey [bowling coach] gave me the cap and it was a very emotional moment for me," almost-30 Chakravarthy told ESPNcricinfo. "It felt like it was a dream come true and it was what I've been wanting for a long time. Obviously, there was responsibility, but I wasn't blinded by all those emotions and just kept myself in the present.
"I had nerves at the start because it was my first match. I had a sleepless night before the match, but everything settled down once I got into the game," he added.
The off-spinner will look to stake a claim in India’s T20 World Cup squad by putting in some good performances for KKR in the second half of IPL 2021, which will get underway in the UAE on September 19.