With focus on improving fitness standards of J&K cricketers, world-famous Yo-Yo Fitness Test for top state cricketers was conducted at Sheri-Kashmir Cricket stadium here on Monday.
The players who have been part of the correction camp conducted by J&K Cricket Association (JKCA) from more than one month now were part of the Yo-Yo Test under the watchful eyes of former Team India trainer Sudarshan V P, J&K team coach Milap Mewada and mentor Irfan Pathan.
From senior cricketers to Under-19 level, around 30 players who had represented State last year at nationals underwent the rigorous test. J&K skipper Parvez Rasool also underwent the Yo-Yo test.
The Yo-Yo Endurance Test is a variation of the beep test, part of the yo-yo test series developed by the Danish soccer physiologist Jens Bangsbo. The test is used to evaluate an individual’s aerobic endurance fitness. From the last five years now, cricket teams across the world have taken to this test to test their fitness levels.
The bar for passing the test was kept at 16.1 level, the same level that Team India was following till recently. The current bar for Team India is 16.5 while as Pakistan it is 17.4, West Indies at 19, New Zealand at 20.1. Level 23 is the highest speed level in a yo-yo test, but no one has come close to getting there yet.
While all the players involved in the camp passed the test crossing the 16.2 set bar, J&K Ranji trophy opening batsman Ahmed Banday recorded best level. He recorded 19.2 level which is even less than the bar he set himself during last year when he recorded 19.4.
J&K cricketers were introduced to the Yo-Yo test last year on the recommendation of its mentor Irfan Pathan who has laid focus on improving the overall standard of J&K cricket.
All the officials and support staff were impressed with the fitness level of players and said that there is still room for the improvement.
It is second stint of former Team India trainer Sudarshan V P with the J&K ace cricketers after having spent 10 days with players during the initial phase of correction camp.
This time he is working along with Milap Mewada, Irfan Pathan as well as JKCA phyios, trainers and other support staff with the aim to set a long-term plan for the J&K cricketers in making fitness a priority.
Players who underwent the Yo-Yo Test praised JKCA for holding a pre-season camp early that was never seen before in J&K cricket.
“Today all the players did well in the Yo-Yo test because we have all been part of this tough coaching camp for more than a month. When the camp started, we were coming after lengthy off-season, but with time we started to get into groove and improve our skills and fitness levels. It is ideal way of starting the preparation for the upcoming season,” said Ahmed Banday.
The pacer Mohammad Mudhasir said that what better a player will want than to get a chance to prepare early for the all important season.
“After being part of the camp for over a month, our fitness level and skills have improved. It has helped us a lot in getting back into rhythm and to be prepared for the season ahead. This is best that has happened to J&K cricket with players getting enough chance to start preparation. Previously, at times, we had played matches on the very day when we reached the venue without any preparations,” Mudhasir said.
JKCA official said that the coaches and support staff have set long-term plans for the teams which involves improving skills and also to identify budding talents.
“In the present-day cricket world, fitness has become essential part of the team and players. From last year, we have also started to focus on it and make players aware about its importance. Irfan Pathan himself has been mentoring both senior and junior players about its benefits,” said JKCA official.