S. SOORAJ | 17th April 2021

Deepak Chahar was at his brilliant best against Punjab Kings, where he scalped 4 wickets and conceded just 13 runs in a staggering spell. His spell included 18 dot balls and MS Dhoni’s strike bowler had a sensational economy rate of 3.25 from the quota he bowled. Chahar’s swing bowling antics restricted PBKS to a meagre target of 106 which CSK chased off easily in 15.4 overs with 6 wickets in hand. 

 He was scintillating with the ball as he knocked the roof of off Mayank Agarwal’s stumps with an absolute peach of a delivery in only the 4th ball of the game and went on to pick up the crucial wickets of Chris Gayle, Nicholas Pooran, and the dangerous Deepak Hooda as thing followed. Deepak Chahar is very effective in swinging the ball. He can swing it both ways and can do wonders with the new ball. Today, we got to see a glimpse of that.

Putting Chahar’s struggles under the microscope

Deepak Chahar didn’t have a great IPL 2020. The whole CSK team was in shambles and Chahar’s poor form wasn’t helping. He was always known to perform well in Chennai’s own Chepauk and the pace-friendly pitches in Dubai let him down because of his lack of pace.

Even his swing bowling expertise didn’t click well as CSK went on to finish 7th in the IPL, their worst display in their time in the competition. His poor run of form didn’t seem to end as he went on to have a torrid T20 series in Australia.

The man was far from his best self and even though India won that series, Chahar’s position in the playing XI was in doubt. He wasn’t picked to play even a single game in the T20 series against England and began preparing for the IPL.

But that woeful form seemed to continue into the current edition of IPL too as he went for 36 runs in his four overs in CSK’s opening game of the season and ended up wicketless. Last night however, things took a turn but this time, for the best.

Why he needs to study the Bhuvi way of staying at the top

Chahar’s lack of pace is one of the main reasons why he hasn’t been able to hack it at the top level. Pace is such an important element of the modern-day’s game for fast bowlers. When you take a look at the greats of the modern game from Bumrah to Rabada, all of them can bowl 140+ with ease.

In the shorter format, bowlers in the Chahar mould get battered, especially in the shorter format.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar is one of the very few bowlers who has consistently managed to sustain himself at the highest level, despite not being blessed with express pace. Deepak Chahar is a very similar bowler. Both of them find it hard to go 140+ but they can swing the ball either way. Bhuvi emerges out as a better bowler because of the variations he has up his sleeve, and his ability to bowl well in the death overs while Chahar’s game mostly revolve around bowling in the powerplay

Deepak Chahar is one of the least effective bowlers when it comes to the death-overs. Only 24% of his overall wickets have seemed to come from the last four overs in an IPL game.

How Dhoni gets the best out of him

Dhoni, being the unmatched genius that he is, understands what his players can and cannot do. Case in point- Deepak Chahar. So, he tends to bowl 3 of his 4 overs (or just all the four a lot of the times) within the first 10 overs. For instance, against the Punjab Kings.

However, just like the green grass and the blue sky, MSD’s backing of his players is something that shouldn’t come out as a surprise. The name Joginder Sharma tells you everything you need to know.

And against PBKS, MSD made sure to put forth the death bowling responsibilities on the likes of Dwayne Bravo and Sam Curran while the likes of Ravindra Jadeja, Moeen Ali and Shardul Thakur bowled in the middle overs.

The former India captain makes sure to play to Chahar’s strengths and by utilizing him in the way he has, you’ll see more such brilliant performances from the lad.

On his 50th appearance for Chennai, Deepak Chahar roared his way to his best ever performance donning yellow. The only way is up.

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