Mumbai: While the Yo-Yo Test has been a part of the sporting world to test fitness of the athletes, it created quite a buzz after reports of Yuvraj Singh and Suresh Raina allegedly failing the same and hence, missing out on a chance to make it to Virat Kohli-led Indian cricket team.
While there were murmurs that clearing the Yo-Yo Test is paramount to be picked in the team, it has now become official that passing the fitness test is mandatory.
“The captain, coach and chief selector, along with the other members of the selection committee in consultation with the support staff (trainer and physio), have set the parameters. The fitness parameters set by the team management for athletes to be eligible for selection are non-negotiable,” BCCI CEO Rahul Johri was quoted as saying by The Indian Express.
Johri also stated that the Indian players are told to attain the basic scores but the fitness bar will be raised in the due course of time.
“On the yo-yo scale, the grade needed to be achieved is 16.1, which is the minimum standard set for an elite international sportsman. The players have been informed of such parameters and most current players have already achieved this standard. In case of any exceptions, we’ve given them sufficient time to raise their fitness levels,” added Johri.
Johri also said that Indian cricketers, who were picked for Sri Lanka series and who now are a part of the Australia series have cleared the Yo-Yo Test as per the requirements of the team management.
A team member from the earlier coaching staff, meanwhile, has cautioned the current team management saying that passing the aerobic fitness test should not become the only parameter of selecting a cricketer.
“The yo-yo test can’t be the only criterion to test a cricketer’s fitness. It’s a skill-based sport. There’s so much mental stamina that’s required too,” said the unnamed member of the Indian cricket team coaching staff from the past.
The report also quoted a former player indicating that a set of rules must be put in place for such tests.
“While standardisation is good, one has to keep in mind the preparation time given to a player before the test and also how much cricket he’s played,” the ex-Indian cricketer said.
The former cricketer also cited the example of a young U-19 star who failed to make the cut to Indian team for Australia T20s after failing to pass the fitness test following a hectic season.
“He’s played literally three non-stop months of cricket, starting with the local TNCA league, then the TNPL and then the Deodhar Trophy and India ‘A’ matches. Then, within a day-and-a-half, if he’s made to undergo a yo-yo test, obviously he can’t be expected to be the most prepared. Plus, players need to be told about the tests. There are those who run too fast at the start and eventually struggle once the time between the beeps starts reducing. You can’t just do it once and say ‘Ok, you’ve failed and you can’t be picked’,” added the ex-India player.