India vs England Series – New Fitness norms for Indian Cricketers: After Team India players suffered numerous injuries during their tour of Australia, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is set to introduce new fitness and endurance test ahead of the whit-ball series against England which is set to commence from March 12.
As per a report by The Indian Express, apart from clearing the yo-yo test, top Indian cricketers will have to clear the mandatory 2-km time trials which will measure their speed and endurance levels.
“The Board felt that the current fitness standard played a huge role in getting our fitness to the next level. It is important to take our fitness level to another level now. The time trial exercise will help us to compete even better. The Board will keep updating the standards every year,” a BCCI official told The Indian Express.
According to the new norm, the fast bowlers will have to cover the 2-km distance is 8 minutes and 15 seconds, while batsmen, wicket-keepers and spinners will have to cover the same distance in 8 minutes and 30 seconds. The minimum yo-yo level for all remains at 17.1.
To place the new norm in perspective, elite athletes are expected to complete 2 km in around 6 minutes, and amateurs in 15 minutes.
The contracted players were informed about the new mark, which has been approved by BCCI president Sourav Ganguly and secretary Jay Shah, in Australia. They were told that the Board has created three windows to carry out the test this year: February, June and August/September.
As of now, BCCI has made an exemption for those who were part of the Test series in Australia. However, those who are in contention for the T20I and ODI series against England will have to undergo this test. It will also be a key criterion in selection for the T20 World Cup, which will be held later this year.
The test — the criteria will be updated later — will be held in the presence of a strength and conditioning member from the BCCI or National Cricket Academy.
Former India team trainer Ramji Srinivasan says a time trial is better than the yo-yo and “most effective” test. “It is more functional towards cricket. This will test speed, threshold zones, how you plan your running pace. And you can’t cheat as this is time-based,” he said.