If coach John Buchanan is excited over the prospect of having two ambidextrous bowlers – Vikas Chowhan and Mohammad Ebrahim Sanuth – at the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) probables list, the credit actually goes to flamboyant India middle-order batsman Yuvraj Singh’s father, Yograj for spotting one of the finds.
Yograj was instrumental in spotting Chowhan, a son of a barber from village Naya Graeon 10 years back.
Yograj was impressed with Chowhan’s right-arm pace bowling skills after he joined his academy in DAV College, Sector 10, Chandigarh.
However, then little did Yograj know that Chowhan was equally good in pace bowling with his left hand also.
“One day, I saw him throwing from his left hand with equal ease. When asked, he told me he can bowl with his left hand. Surprised, I made him bowl at the nets and he hit the stumps with equal ease,” Yograj said from his Chandigarh residence.
A veteran of one Test and six One-Day Internationals, the former India player predicted that Chowhan, now 24, will go far if given right opportunity.
“I am sure he (Chowhan) can serve the country for a long time if given chance. The Kolkata Knight Riders call up is really great for him as his talent was going waste in the muddle of our associations. But the chance to play and showcase their skills to greats like Sourav Ganguly and John Buchanan in a venue like the historic Eden Gardens is really great for him,” Yograj, who is also coach of another KKR probable H Kali, said.
“He hails from a village and has a poor background but his commitment level is amazing. He is very hard working who always gives more than 100 per cent,” he added.
However, Yograj lamented that Chowhan is part of a faulty Indian system where regional bias still exists.
“Being a player from Chandigarh, which is affiliated to Punjab, Haryana and Himachal cricket associations, Chowhan and more such talents are caught up in the mess. We have to beg at different associations for getting a berth,” the 50-year-old claimed.
Interestingly, the other ambidextrous bowler in the Knight Riders probables line-up, Kerala off-spinner Sanuth started bowling with his left hand after getting inspiration from one of his friend.
“I liked my friend’s left-arm bowling so I started bowling with my left hand and could able to generate spin with effect.”