Three years into the academy, the efforts are already producing results.
It was the first time Natarajan had ever held a cricket ball in his hands. Varun was in his native place in Thanjavur watching it with his family and grandparents. Get your daily dose of Sportstar with handpicked stories delivered right to your inbox! Sandip Gsandip.email@example.com... read more, Copyright © 2020 The Indian Express [P] Ltd. All Rights Reserved, T Natarajan has delivered 27 yorkers since the beginning of this IPL season. Karthik along with KKR team analyst A.R. “I was afraid to dream when I was young, but anna (elder brother) told me that only dreams will take you places. But Natarajan didn’t, which showed his adaptability and will power. The Internet is wonky and electricity fickle, but the village has two turf wickets — both at Natarajan’s academy — while the whole of Salem district has just six. The village — whose entertainment once revolved around the Friday movie releases, the temple festivals during the month of Margazhi, jallikattu and the raunchy ‘record dance’ — now gets its kicks from cricket. Mumbai's big-hitting all-rounder Shivam Dube attracted the attention of as many as four franchises during the ongoing IPL auction. “The idea of the academy is not to make money; in fact it’s entirely free for the children who train here.
Then I saved some money and borrowed some and bought a pair of shoes that I used for several years.
“It’s pure love… It’s like a festival here,” says Prakash, the coach at the academy.The love stems less from Natarajan’s fame, more because he has given the village an identity. The reason he started the academy, Natarajan recently said in a Sunrisers Hyderabad video, was to give the youngsters of the village the exposure he never had. I was nervous before the auction and did not expect to get picked beyond my base price." Dreams and hard work. The Sunrisers Hyderabad bowler has already landed 27 in the block-hole in seven games; Jasprit Bumrah, the most vaunted yorker expert, has only been able to muster 17 this edition.
“Most of the time, we just showed him visuals, and he would make the corrections himself. Or, as he adds, “more than a hero”.
The leg-spinner was also the second highest wicket-taker in the the recently concluded Vijay Hazare Trophy. Like most young men in the village, their dreams rarely strayed beyond its physical boundaries — Natarajan knew he would end up being a porter or a weaver like his father, and Periyaswamy would help his father in his tea shack. He went unsold this IPL, though he has travelled to the Emirates as a net bowler for the Kolkata Knight Riders. A movie buff, he pauses and strikes a Rajinikanth parallel: “Namma ooru Rajini Nattu annan tha (The Rajinikanth of our village is Natarajan). Just when the stifling April heat slows down life in Chinnappampatti, a village 36 km west of Salem in Tamil Nadu, the lives of two young fast bowlers would pick pace. “One evening, when I returned home from the kiln, he was waiting for me at my house and told me to quit the job. Gowtham, academy coach N Prakash says, is their best-kept secret — “our next Natarajan… kandippa (certainly).” This is what Natarajan had envisaged when he set up the academy — to produce professional cricketers from his village. There was little to play for — no match fee, no transport allowance, cricket kits or shoes — except for the winner-takes-all prize money of Rs 25,000 (shared among two dozen teammates) and, if lucky, an imitation-gold trophy or a watch that the man of tournament took away.
So indebted is Natarajan to his mentor that on his SRH blazer is emblazoned ‘JP Nattu’ — JP for Jayaprakash and “Nattu” the name Natarajan goes by among family.
That’s when Subramaniam realised that he was watching a special player, one with exceptional grasping skills. The Tamil Nadu Cricket Association governing council has announced the schedule for the upcoming season of the Tamil Nadu Premier League T20. Besides Periyaswamy, two other youngsters have made it to the Salem district team — V Gowtham and Aravind.
For Natarajan, the first six months at the academy were filled with self-doubt.Retooling an action is far from easy. This dream script, though, is still being written.
But his background turned out to be a blessing in disguise. A few months after Natarajan’s first IPL stint in 2017, the academy came up in a half-acre land that belonged to his friend K Krishnakumar. He later returned to the game, honing his skills as a spinner able to bowl both off and leg breaks, with quite a few tricks under his hat. For most tennis-ball bowlers, yorkers are a weapon of survival; for the two, it was also a weapon of emancipation — shaping for them a trajectory that would have been unimaginable less than a decade ago. Only yorkers did.
He would be here by around 7 in the morning and stay till evening, talking, teaching. For Chinnappampatti to be the cricketing hub of Salem, which before Natarajan had produced just one first-class cricketer — left-arm orthodox spinner K R Sivaprakasham, who was dropped after one match in 1990. Soon after Natarajan’s first-class debut in 2015, he found his name in the list of bowlers called for suspect action. Justin Langer opposed to Test and T20 schedule clash, RCB vs KXIP preview: K. L. Rahul & Co. desperate for a win, IPL 2020: RCB vs KXIP- Head-to-head record, players to watch out for, DC vs RR, IPL 2020: Spirited Delhi Capitals bowlers stifle Rajasthan Royals in tense chase, African club competitions return after lengthy hiatus, UEFA Nations League: Italy held by Dutch, Poland thrashes Bosnia, UEFA Nations League: Lukaku double powers Belgium against Iceland, France beats Croatia 2-1, UEFA Nations League: Portugal brushes off Sweden, Eriksen penalty sinks 10-man England, ISL 2020-21: Mumbai City FC ropes in Mandar Rao Dessai, ISL 2020-21: Hyderabad FC starts Level 3 training in Goa, ISL: Kerala Blasters signs Zimbabwean defender Costa Nhamoinesu, ISL 2020-21: Robbie Fowler keen on experiencing East Bengal-Mohun Bagan rivalry.
Delhi Capitals, Kings XI Punjab, Bangalore and Mumbai Indians placed its bids and Delhi backed out at 1.1 crore before Bangalore picked him for a whooping amount. At times, even Periyaswamy wonders if it’s all real.
He returns home a millionaire, turns his mud house into a bungalow and starts a cricket academy for the local children.
With a base price of INR 20 lakh, Dube was finally picked by Royal Challengers Bangalore for INR 5 Crore.
How could I disagree when the perfect example of that was right in front of me,” says Periyaswamy, talking from the UAE.
It takes 13,000 balls for the new action to set in, and I think he might have even bowled more,” Subramaniam says. Sometimes, he invites state players to the academy.” After a fierce bidding war, the bowler emerged as the most expensive player in this year's sell-off along with Indian left-arm seamer Jaydev Unadkat, bagged by Rajasthan Royals for the same price. Explained: Does BSP hold any influence in Bihar? Periyaswamy spent the next six months at the Natarajan Academy, working on his bowling, and unlearning pessimism and learning to dream.
“He is as grounded as he has always been, very loving and affectionate. What was once a two-room structure with mud floors and a tiny verandah, is now the only two-storey house in the village.
In the Sunrisers Hyderabad video, Natarajan says his parents don’t understand cricket. Natarajan realises he could easily have been the one to slip away unnoticed, if it wasn’t for Jayaprakash. Royal Challengers Bangalore vs Kings XI Punjab . The TNPL player drafted is set to take place on July 4 and after the completion of the draft, TNPL 2019 Teams Squad and full players list will be released.
Dube also played a key role in Mumbai's Vijay Hazare Trophy campaign by helping his team win the title. In a recent interview to a publication, the mystery spinner said that he has as many as seven variations. #OpenMike pic.twitter.com/7cTaaziMS9, Shivam Dube (Mumbai, Rs 20L Base Price. In one of the club cricket games that they played in, Jayaprakash tossed a brand new leather ball in Natarajan’s direction and asked him to bowl. 30th Match. Delhi Capitals vs Rajasthan Royals. The allrounder who has been in excellent form for Mumbai is currently the second-highest run-getter with 489 runs. The fundamental problem was his loading, recalls Subramaniam.
For reprint rights: Times Syndication Service, CHENNAI: As many as 53 cricketers from Tamil Nadu have registered for the upcoming, 53 Tamil Nadu cricketers register for IPL auctions. His financial condition then was poor and his entire family depended on him,” recalls Subramaniam, who was influential in the growth of Ravichandran Ashwin too.
So it was comparatively easier,” says Subramaniam.Thus began an intense regimen, wherein he would first shadow bowl with his new action, then bowl with the ball in hand but not hurl, then gradually start bowling without a run-up, then run-up with two strides, then at full pelt, first without a batsman at the other end, then with one playing defensive strokes and then finally a batsman playing attacking strokes. 53 Tamil Nadu cricketers register for IPL auctions; Winning Ranji team players sign up for IPL auction; Samsung has just announced the #FullOn Galaxy F series, and the hype is crazy! That’s when life took a rather sudden turn, much like in the Rajinikanth blockbusters that were once a big draw in the village’s two ramshackle cinema halls. Varun Chakravarthy was picked by KXIP for Rs 8.4 crore. “I knew it would not be enough for his bus ticket and food. Such was his performance that he earned praise from former Australian batsman Mike Hussey.
So awestruck was he that he had an emotional breakdown during that Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy match. I explained my plight, about the debts my father incurred while paying for my medical bills (an illness early in life had led to loss of vision in his right eye) but he hugged me and said, ‘Don’t worry about anything. Though the villagers are still learning their cricket, they are an intense and involved audience. In 2018, Sunrisers Hyderabad bought him for Rs 40 lakh, and he has been with the team since then. “I was trembling, because I was bowling with my hero,” he says. - R. Ragu.
Natarajan’s story is unique also for how he is raising back the village that raised him, inspiring another generation of cricketers in this back-woodsy village.
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