Varun Aaron takes help of MRF Pace Foundation experts in a bid to regain Indian team berth

Former Australia fast bowler Glenn McGrath is the director of the academy.

Varun Aaron at the MRF Pace Foundation with Glenn McGrath | K Pichumani/Sportstarlive

There was a time when Jharkhand’s Varun Aaron was definitely the fastest bowler in India. He was definitely fast and his speed saw him play 9 ODIs and 9 Tests for India. However, constant injuries and form struggles made him loose his way and now he looks to redeem himself.

Aaron, who played for RCB until the last season, was not picked up by any franchise in the IPL 2018 auction, thanks to his history with stress fractures, which required a surgery to set a vertebra right and niggles. This made Aaron realize that he needs to put his action right in order to have a long career in cricket.

Missing the IPL could be a blessing in disguise. Ever since I got back to the Indian team in 2014, there have been some tournament or the other and I never had time to look into the finer aspects,” Aaron told Sportstar.

“I am working on a few changes in my action which will be more efficient with the body. This wouldn’t have happened had I not got time off. It is not a major change, but a minor adjustment,” added Aaron, who is training under the watchful eyes of Australian legend Glenn McGrath at the MRF Pace Foundation.

IPL is one of the bigger tournaments in the country and missing it is a big deal for a lot of people. I am not saying this because I am not playing this time, but I have been contemplating skipping the tournament. Last season, I thought of going and playing county instead. But I was contracted and I didn’t want to go down that path. This time, it happened by default,” he revealed.

Varun added, “I am still keen to play county.

When I returned to the Indian team, I was swinging the ball too. I had made a slight change to my action then. But I never had time to think on the adjustments, which was a big mistake. I should have focused on the changes that helped me get back to the team. This is a great opportunity for me to backtrack a little bit, go back to the basics and get them right. I will not compromise on pace. My way of looking at things are different and I am sure it will pay in the long run,” said Aaron

M. Senthilnathan, the chief coach at the MRF Pace Foundation said, “We (along with Glenn McGrath, the director of the academy) are trying to fine-tune his action so that his back is safe. He had a couple of back injuries and stress fractures in the past. We are trying to get an injury-free action. It is a technique to prevent injury and increase efficiency."

We asked him to bowl with a short run-up, watch the video and then go back two yards and run in again. The idea is to get him consistent in the short run first. It takes time. When he is trying to bowl a little faster going back a few yards, he is much better than earlier but still, he is not achieving what he is getting in the short run. Eventually, he will get it,” he added.

We are working on his technical base. If that comes along with fitness, then he will be a different bowler. Nobody doubts his abilities; leave alone the IPL, those things will follow him. As far as I am concerned, I feel he needs to play for the country again,” he added.

“One of my dreams is to help India win a series abroad,” he said, eyeing the tour down under later in 2018, as his goal to return to Team India.


By Jatin Sharma - 13 Mar, 2018

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