Rajasthan Royals pacer Varun Aaron feels the gentleman’s game is changing swiftly as batsmen today have many innovations in their kitty to cope with the bowlers. As a result, he feels that the bowlers should also come with new tricks and techniques, a thing he has focussed on in recent times. After being on the bench for most of the first half, Aaron bowled a magnificent spell against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and played an instrumental role in his side’s three-wicket win. The Jharkhand pacer hogged the limelight after bowling an excellent inswinger to get rid of KKR opener Shubhman Gill, who was completely beaten by a brilliant in-swinging knuckleball.

The delivery from Aaron took a sharp turn and crashed into the stumps after taking a slight edge from Gill’s bat. Aaron felt the variations in his bowling is a result of his hard work and the better understanding of the game. Speaking to IANS, the 29-year-old admitted that not featuring in the IPL last year helped him improve his bowling variations. “I think not playing IPL previous year really benefitted me. I used to do these (variations) all things before but as I had to play regular cricket, I didn’t get enough time to perfect it to the degree I wanted. Playing county cricket last year and getting a lot of time from the mainstream Indian cricket gave me that time and platform to practice and perfect my variations.

“I really enjoyed my time with Leicestershire. Yes, I am looking to play more county cricket,” he added. Aaron also believed the game of cricket is changing and along with the batsmen, bowlers also need to emerge with innovative ideas. “My bowling has evolved in the last year. The game is changing rapidly as batsmen are coming with innovative shots and I feel the bowlers also need to step up and should have tricks under their sleeves, a thing which I have worked on since a while and I am glad it is coming out well now,” he revealed.

Asked about not being given enough chance in the playing eleven of the Royals, Aaron said: “Yes, I was given a chance after ten games and was really looking to play since the start of the season. I did get a game before but just bowled one over. I was waiting for this chance and had been preparing for a long time.” Speaking on the wicket of Gill, which grabbed everyone’s attention, he said: “I just stuck to the basics and knew the Eden (Garden) wicket was going to suit the way I bowl because there was the pace and carry. I bowled a knuckleball as I knew it would swing with the new ball. I had been bowling it for quite some time. I just feel that it happened at the right time and the wicket also helped.”

Aaron however, didn’t look disappointed after not getting much chance. “I wouldn’t say I was disappointed as in any team the management thinks of certain permutations and combinations to win a game and if they thought of making other guys play, that is fine because at the end of the day it is their call.” “I still feel we have a good chance to qualify and if I can play a major role in making my team win the trophy, missing the first ten matches wouldn’t matter,” he added.

The Royals had switched captains mid-way during this season as Ajinkya Rahane had to make way for Steve Smith but Aaron said their below-par performance was not because of leadership.
“Both Smith and Rahane are really good captains. We didn’t do well in the first half and I don’t think that was because of the leadership issue. We lost games by small margins and a captain can’t control that,” he explained.