Group B: Desai, Chawla keep Gujarat juggernaut rolling
Saurashtra move to No. 1 after Jharkhand collapse; defending champions make it three in three, while Kerala also win their third game of the season
Piyush Chawla has been part of India’s 2007 World T20 winning squad and the 2011 World Cup winning ODI squad, but even today, he’s best identified for the wicket-taking googly he bowled as a 17-year old to Sachin Tendulkar in the Challenger Trophy final of 2005. Given that start, he was tipped as the man who could succeed Anil Kumble, but his career hasn’t quite panned out that way. A technical glitch with his head position and and consequent inability to control the release of his deliveries have not helped. Chawla’s leg-break doesn’t turn a huge way, but he has good variations. Of late, he has also started putting a price on his wicket as a batsman and has been a consistent scorer for Uttar Pradesh and Central Zone in India’s domestic circuit. His batting at international level hasn’t clicked though with single figure averages in the 2 Tests and 25 ODIs he has played in so far. Chawla’s career started promisingly enough, but his appearances for the Indian team in recent times have been few and far in between. When he has been called up, it’s been in the nature of a surprising recall, as it was before the 2011 World Cup and the World Twenty20 in 2010. He was bought by Kings XI Punjab in the inaugural IPL auctions for $US400,000 and even though the team didn’t retain any players before the 2011 auction, they bought him again, this time for $US900,000.