Many times when we see batsmen with a trademark shot or bowlers with a unique action, we tend to believe it’s God-given. But in a tell-all webisode of Cricbuzz’s new show Spicy Pitch, Deepak Chahar’s father and coach reveal what it really takes to play world-class cricket.
Chahar senior says, “Everyone looks at Deepak and thinks that he has this natural ability to swing the ball at speeds of over 140 km/hr. But the reality is very different. I looked at bowlers like Dale Steyn and Malcolm Marshall who were swinging the ball at very high speeds. I knew that India could use such a bowler. And that’s how Deepak and I worked at his technique.”
Deepak concurs, “I would bowl 500 deliveries to my father every single day — 250 in swingers and 250 outswingers. For me, it’s not about natural talent— it’s all about understanding what you need to be and working hard every single day to get there. Regrets are the one thing I don’t want to have when I look back on my career.”
The younger Chahar, Rahul, also learned things the same way. Coach Chahar recalls, “When he was very young, Rahul would bowl pace just like Deepak. But I realized that wasn’t his strength, and I encouraged him to try leg-spin. Then for a long time, his bowling was very slow, and I knew that the slow-ish leg-spin just doesn’t work anymore. So, I kept pushing him to improve his fitness and increase his pace. Today, his speed is at least 5km/hr more than regular leg-spinners and it gives him a big edge while bowling.”
Clearly, there’s a lot more to success than just pure talent, and both the Chahar brothers are living proof. To know more about their personal lives, their family, and their cricketing journey so far, watch the latest episode of Spicy Pitch on the Cricbuzz website as well as on app. The show drops on Saturday, the 18th of April.
It may seem strange but the Chahar brothers’ life is the perfect storyline for a blockbuster Hindi movie. The two brothers hail from Agra, from a relatively humble background, and their journey to the IPL and the Indian cricket team has been nothing short of spectacular.
But that’s not what makes their story unique. Their story begins much before they were even born. Deepak and Rahul’s fathers are brothers and what’s more, they married two sisters! So, Deepak and Rahul are related twice over.
What’s even more fascinating is the story of how Deepak’s father — an ordinary person without any experience of professional cricket — transformed himself into a coach that managed to produce not just one but two international cricketers.
Chahar senior started coaching his son Deepak when he saw the boy’s talent with the ball. And Rahul, who is a lot younger than Deepak, just followed in his elder brother’s footsteps.
In fact, Rahul admired Deepak so much that he started off as a pace bowler, just like his brother. But Rahul’s uncle (and Deepak’s father) saw that his action wasn’t good enough for him to become a world-class pace bowler.
That’s when he and Deepak both convinced Rahul to try his hand at leg-spin instead. The rest, as they say, is history. Rahul is one of India’s finest leg spinners, his guile, and technique helping him make it to both the Indian as well as the Mumbai Indians team at just 20 years of age.
Of course, when it comes to the Chahar family, the best is yet to come. In the words of Deepak, “Our family’s story, especially my father’s, would make for the perfect movie script. So far there’s been drama, there’s been some struggle, and there’s been some measure of success. However, we feel that the climax is yet to come. When we reach a point of such success where we can confidently say that we are at the finishing line, then the movie will definitely be made.”
For more interesting anecdotes from the Chahar brothers, watch the latest no-holds-barred episode of Cricbuzz’s new show, Spicy Pitch. The episode drops on Saturday, the 18th of April, on the Cricbuzz website as well as app.