Virat Kohli, after the 3rd ODI against West Indies, which helped India clinch the series, mentioned that 2019 was very important for Indian cricket as it saw the rise of a crop of young fast bowlers, who combined with the senior members form an exciting group of bowling specialists that can address the concerns Indian cricket has had in that department for a long time.
However, this has also come at the cost of many of these bowlers suffering long-term injuries. Be it Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar or be it Shardul Thakur, Hardik Pandya and most recently, Deepak Chahar, all of them have been plagued with major or recurring injuries since the last couple of years which has hindered the normal functioning of the bowling unit.
In light of such frequent breakdowns, addressing these issues, finding quick solutions and trying to prevent them in the first place is the need of the hour for the apex governing body of Indian Cricket, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). They have been trying, on their behalf to avoid such recurring long-term injuries which turn out to be very detrimental both in the short term and the long term. Chief Selector of the BCCI MSK Prasad cited the frequency of the games played by the athletes in modern cricket as one of the reasons which often leads to muscle overloads, accumulation of fatigue, insufficient recovery.
“You have to understand that these players play a lot of matches. Even Deepak Chahar had been constantly giving his all for Rajasthan in tournaments like Syed Mushtaq Ali between two international series. His injury got aggravated during the last ODI series against West Indies,” Prasad said on Monday.
The cricketers are subjected to a lot of cricket. The number of domestic, India ‘A’ and senior national team matches is baffling and often puts a lot of exertion and exhaustion on the up and coming players that are not used to such overblown exposure. MSK Prasad said that he had delivered a presentation to the BCCI on the topic to preserve and protect the fast bowlers at the domestic level.
“We gave a presentation to the captains and coaches at a conclave last year. We had recommended that there should be a system where the identified bowlers are given adequate rest during the domestic season. Each team plays at least eight Ranji games in two months besides other tournaments,” Prasad told TOI while adding: “We have to also understand that state teams also want to win, get promoted or grow. It is eventually the state team’s call. But we are seeing positive changes this year.”
BCCI had bought Athlete Management System devices which helps them in monitoring and tracking the workload of the players that have central contracts. The BCCI has 25 such players in central contracts and possesses around 30 such Athlete Management System devices. Deepak Chahar, for instance, is one of the many in the list of such upcoming fast bowlers who are constantly being monitored by the BCCI and its experts.
The National Cricket Academy also has around 50 cricketers to its pool who are being monitored continuously in different ways.
The need for the BCCI here is to sustain the pace revolution that has hit Indian cricket and to help it flourish by imposing a uniform system that will monitor the workload of fast bowlers across all states to avoid and prevent injuries.
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