The young and impressive lad from Rajasthan, Deepak Chahar recently celebrated his 28th birth anniversary. In a game that always seconds avid youngsters, Chahar’s is a blossoming story, a journey of making most of the chances, despite breaking into the top annals slightly later than one would’ve liked.
But his is a tale of persistence and consistency, and let that not be taken away from him, of triumphing in the competitive and tiring domestic quarters.
As captain of Rajasthan in domestic white-ball competitions, Deepak Chahar has come a long way in his career and is one of the most improved bowlers at present in the Indian domestic circuit.
Greg Chappell spotted Chahar as the-then director of Rajasthan’s cricket academy in 2008. From thereon in, Chahar’s journey has been rising through the ranks and never looking back.
Wondering how? Deepak Chahar immediately made an impact and impressed everyone with his debut game where he picked 8 wickets and restricted Hyderabad for 21 runs which is the lowest score in domestic cricket to date. Let that sink in.
Although he started his career on a bright note, like 8 out of 10 fast bowlers in the country, he had to fight against injuries and he finally came into the limelight when he played his first IPL game for Rising Pune Supergiants in 2016 against Delhi Daredevils. He played just 2 games in which he went wicketless but showed great signs with his ability to take the ball away from right-hand batsmen.
He once again didn’t get enough opportunities in 2017 where he played just 3 games and managed to pick just a solitary wicket at an economy of 10.75 runs per over.
It was in 2018 that he came on his own where he bowled very well for CSK and MS Dhoni used him in the best possible way by giving 3 over spells straight up with the new ball. He bowled brilliant lengths and the movement he got was enough to make the batsmen’s life miserable. He played 12 games and picked 10 wickets at an economy rate of 7.28.
Even after having a decent season, Deepak Chahar was mainly seen as a new ball bowler but he defied all odds and transformed himself into a complete bowler and took the responsibility to bowl at death in 2019 which also fetched him a handful of wickets as he finished the season with 22 wickets at an economy of 7.47 with the strike rate of 17.59.
And it was here, in perhaps the most testing quarter of international T20 cricket where Deepak Chahar raised his most iconic performance, to date. A performance that would draw a smile and perhaps a pat on the back by even the greats like Akram, McGrath, Ambrose, and Anderson. Against Bangladesh, Chahar clinched an envious, nearly unbelievable 6 wickets conceding 7 runs. You do that in Tests- it’s entirely believable.
But to come up with an ace like that in a highly batsman-friendly format is stuff worthy of endless adulation.
Coming back to the illustrious franchise T20 league, an area which was haunting him before the 2019 edition of the IPL was bowling at death but the medium-fast bowler proved that he is no slouch at death as he bowled a considerable amount of overs in the slog overs and returned with impressive numbers.
He bowled 57 balls from over 16 to 20 in the 2019 IPL and gave away just 78 runs at an ER of 8.14 which any captain would take with both hands.
He was fast-tracked into the Indian team after an impressive outing in the IPL and played his 1st T20I game for India in the series decider against England in England. Although Indian won that high scoring encounter, Deepak Chahar had a forgettable outing as he was dealt with rather easily by the English batsmen and he finished with the match figures of 1 for 43 in his 4 overs.
Deepak Chahar was always around the Indian white-ball circuit and is a much-improved bowler than what he was 2 years ago. His majestic spell against Bangladesh in Nagpur in 2019 which was again a series decider where he took the best figures by any Indian bowler. He took 6 wickets in that game including a hat-trick and his figures read as 3.2 overs 6 wickets for 7 runs.
He missed the flight to New Zealand early this year due to an injury where he might have got tested big time as the wickets wouldn’t have helped him to any extent. He has already proved what a valuable asset he can be on wickets that is slow in nature and it’s only a matter of time that he earns a name for himself as an all-round bowler for India.
At the moment, there is no doubt that Deepak Chahar is one of the top 5 pacers for India as far as the shortest format is concerned and will be looking to groom himself into an all-format bowler in the coming days.