On the eve of the first Test against England, India captain Virat Kohli spoke about the mental toll life in bio-bubble has on the players. Citing the example of Ben Stokes, who has pulled out of the Test series and will take “an indefinite break from all cricket” to focus on his mental wellbeing, he said other players would too take breaks to take care of mental issues.
Virat Kohli, who himself deals with a huge amount of pressure being the captain and arguably the best batsman in the side, said operating the bubble is challenging both physically and mentally for the players as they are confined to the ground and the team hotel mostly.
The Indian contingent had a three-week break after the WTC final against New Zealand before they convened again in Durham for the preparation of the series with a warm-up fixture. The skipper underlined the importance of such breaks.
“Like he’s [Stokes] taken a break, there could be more players in the future, at some stage or the other, who could get fatigued by the bubble life. Kohli said on Tuesday.
“For us this break was very important and with regards to the preparation for this series, we realise how important the break was. We’re going into the series fresh and with an exciting mindset.
“We’re optimistic that now we can give our best efforts over five Tests. And we’re not confined in one environment. So these little things matter a lot and for us, for me as captain especially, this break came at an opportune time,” he added.
We are definitely much better prepared than we have been in the past: Virat Kohli
India had entered the UK in early June for the WTC final, which they lost to New Zealand. With more than two months under their belt in England, Virat Kohli opined the side is “definitely much better prepared” for the series than they’ve ever been.
He believes that the players have had more than enough time to acclimatise themselves to the conditions on offer.
“We are definitely much better prepared than we have been in the past. The situation allowed us to get acclimatised to the weather firstly because it can change quite drastically and quite quickly.
“At the same time playing under different changes in conditions in terms of weather – whether it is overcast, or it is sunny, how the pitches behave, how the ball travels, how much it swings in the air. All those kinds of things are definitely going to add to our experience which already the team possesses a lot of, having played in England in the past,” the 32-year-old stated.