With inter-state travel still banned due to the coronavirus-forced lockdown, Indian cricketers will have to avail the grounds of their respective home states to indulge in running and focus on their skillwork, said national bowling coach Bharat Arun. Confined to their homes since a nationwide lockdown was enforced to contain the health crisis, the Indian cricketers have not been able to indulge in running which is an important part of their fitness regime.
"Partially now the lockdown is lifted but inter-state travel is going to be a problem. What the players are going to do is, they will be going to their respective hometown, the grounds that are available, they would do their running and they would also combine it with skill-work," Arun said in 'Lockdown But Not Out' series by FanCode.
Arun said players will take at least a month and a half to achieve match fitness and hoped BCCI can conduct a tournament before they play international cricket. "It'd take us at least 6-8 weeks for us to play international matches, whereby we'd be first working on the skill, and fitness in the camps and then we'll progress onto match simulations, and hopefully the BCCI can organize a tournament just before we play the international matches, that would be great for us," he said.
The 57-year-old said the lockdown was an opportunity for the bowlers to recover from niggles and work on their fitness. "I'm not worried about the bowlers because they've had ample time in the last 2 months, to work on strength and their fitness," he said.
"Very rarely does an international cricketer, especially our bowlers, would get this kind of time to work on their fitness. Also, it is a wonderful opportunity for them to get over the little niggles, that they may have got over the long season."
The former all-rounder said he has no doubts that the players will be raring to go once the camp starts. "I'm very confident that when we regroup, they would be raring to go mentally and physically. They would be really raring to go and that augurs well for them," he said.
Talking about India's semifinal exit at last year's World Cup, Arun said: "Yes, the World Cup loss still hurts us, it's still hurting us and we'll probably go all out to see that we leave no stone unturned in our preparation to make sure that we do exceptionally well in the World Cup. "To win a World Cup, I think we need to really plan well and how far we execute our plan."