File photo of MS Dhoni© AFP
While injuries can happen to any sportsperson, the Indian cricket team seems to be getting more affected by it. In the Test series against Bangladesh starting on Wednesday, Rohit Sharma will be missing the first Test due to a thumb injury. Fast bowler Mohammed Shami and all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja have also been ruled out of the series as they are yet to fully recover from their respective shoulder and knee injuries. These three injuries are not an exception as recently Jasprit Bumrah missed the T20 World Cup with an injury.
Several experts have said that India’s hectic schedule is one of the reasons behind so many players getting injured. Others have said that specialists should be used in each format to manage the workload. Now, former strength and conditioning coach of the Indian team, Ramji Srinivasan, who was with the side during the 2011 World Cup-winning campaign, has opened up on the issue.
“Picking specialists for each format is a call that has to be taken by the selectors and the coaching staff. But if the selectors decide that a player is going to feature in all three formats, it is the duty of the strength and conditioning coach to keep the player fit. There is nothing wrong in players featuring in all three formats. Don’t forget, 10 years ago, you had MS Dhoni, Yuvraj Singh, Irfan Pathan, Harbhajan Singh, Zaheer Khan featuring in all three formats. Players understood their body and were smart enough to know what worked for them. And they shouldn’t follow what an S&C says blindly. They should ask questions,” Srinivasan wrote for Indian Express.
“Playing three formats is an evolution of the game and as far as fitness goes, everything is possible. But for that, testing, screening, training, plan & travel and diet schedule have to be finalised accordingly. There will be players who are equipped to play all three formats and only skill should determine it, not fitness. If there is an all-format player, he has to be trained accordingly. And as a player ages, one has to factor in that as well. Virat Kohli can’t be following the same process now that he was doing four years ago.”
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