Did you know? Chahal before starting his career in the Indian Cricket team was a brilliant chess player participating in National level Chess tournament & representing India at the World Youth Chess Championship.
India leg spinner Yuzvendra Chahal has revealed the difficulties he faced as a youngster in balancing both chess & cricket at the same time & the situation that led him to decide to choose cricket as a career.
Chahal before starting a career for India In Cricket was a brilliant chess player who participated in National level chess & represented India at the World Youth Chess Championship. But with the venture into cricket, Chahal was unable to strike a balance between the two sports & made his mind to concentrate only on one game.
“I took up my first Nationals of Chess in the year 1998 and at that time I was also playing cricket. And I realized that you can’t play both sports at the same time. Chess requires 10-12 hours of training & then 6-8 hours for cricket training managing two sports together was becoming very difficult for me. So, when I came back from the World Cup, I told my father I will focus only on cricket”. Chahal told S Badrinath on his show when the reports got circulated that not finding enough sponsors played a role in Chahal leaving behind his blooming career in chess.
However, as Chahal has become an integral part of India’s limited-overs format of cricket the legspinner highlights that there are similarities between cricket & chess believing that patience plays a key role in both these sports.
“In chess, you have to be quite patient as every match is about 6-7 hours & you are playing sitting at one place without speaking much. Similarly, in cricket, you bowled brilliantly but most of the time you didn’t get wickets. So, in this case, you have to be patient & keep in mind that you are bowling well & you will get wickets in the next over”, Chahal mentioned.