Fielding average and dropping catches is nothing new in Indian cricket. But when this happens despite the high fielding and fitness standards set by the current Indian team, it is surprising to many. As unbelievable as it is, the standard of fielding does not do justice to it despite how physically good it is among Indian players.
India captain Virat Kohli himself admitted that he was not very happy with the body language of the team in the second part of the third T20I with England. Even when Rahul Tewatia and Varun Chakraborty failed their fitness tests ahead of the T20I series, Kohli insisted that there was no compromise on that ground. It is safe to say that the Indian captain feels that there is no place for complacency in this Indian team as far as fitness is concerned.
Kohli’s passion for fitness is something that is in the news all over the world, but what really happened is that former India captain Virender Sehwag has just answered the big question. Sehwag narrated an incident in 2011, when the Indian team toured England and a young Kohli was part of India’s Test and limited-overs squad.
I last played two Test matches in England in 2011/12. I played one match at The Oval and one in Birmingham. All county teams that are in their dressing room have a chart that displays standards of fitness. The fitness standards of this current Indian team seem to have been raised from there, Sehwag said on Cricbuzz.
He further explained how the players were excited about trying it themselves, but failed miserably to try it. But somewhere from Kohli’s heart, he did not accept it, and the fitness moniker that surrounded this Indian team redeemed that failed effort well, Sehwag said.
I am saying this because we were still affected by it. It should be weight, mobility, flexibility, and so on. When we tried to do it, more than half of our team failed those tests. 2011/12, Sehwag said.
So I think that is what Virat Kohli has chosen. If that is the standard in fitness in England, we should too. And ever since he took over as captain, he has placed enough emphasis on fitness to clear a few tests, and only then is the best match we can do.