The current Indian team has so many tremendous fielders, and they are supremely fit. The credit for preparing the whole team to work hard in the fielding department actually goes to MS Dhoni, who brought the ‘fielding’ culture in the side. The glimpse of which was seen in the 2013 Champions Trophy in England when the Indian team showed a completely different avatar and fielded better than any other side.
The legacy of such culture has been continued by current skipper Virat Kohli as well. He himself is a stunning fielder and often motivates his players to make an extra effort in the outfield. Due to such culture, the ‘yo-yo fitness test’ has become an essential part of the players’ selection criteria at present.
This test is actually significant, and few players in the past have even lost their place after they failed to perform up to the desired mark. For example, Ambati Rayudu was dropped from the Indian squad just before the England tour in 2018 as he failed the ‘yo-yo test’.
One can say that in current times fitness is given the utmost priority. Even in the early 2000s, fitness was equally important, however, then there were no such ‘yo-yo tests’ which were conducted before the selection of players.
Shedding light upon the fitness during his playing days, former India cricketer Mohammad Kaif has claimed that not many would’ve cleared the ‘yo-yo test’ had it been conducted in that era. He believed that only two cricketers, along with him, would have cleared the test. Kaif took his name and picked Lakshmipathy Balaji, Yuvraj Singh as the ideal candidates who would have passed the yo-yo test.
“Fitness is very important for cricketers. If we did the Yo-Ye test during our time, Balaji and I could have fulfilled that criteria, even Yuvraj Singh was good. But, I do not think that others would have passed the Yo_Yo test,” said Kaif during a live Helo Session.
Kaif also heaped praises on Kohli for his contribution and termed him as a big player. The former Uttar Pradesh cricketer also mentioned that the entire team needs to perform in order to win the big tournaments.
“Individually, Kohli is a big player, but to win tournaments, the whole team should contribute. I hope Kohli will work on this. At the same time, he needs to back his selection and should give proper chances to show their talents,” the 39-year-old added.