Former Indian cricketer Mohammed Kaif said that the Yo-Yo should not be the main criteria for selecting a player in a team. The BCCI and the team-management has made it mandatory for the players to clear the much-debated fitness test in order to be eligible for selection.

Team India has set a benchmark of 16.1 for the Yo-Yo test. The criteria have been established for the last couple of years.

“Fitness is important as we have that the fielding standard of the Indian team has improved a lot. But there should be a balanced approach,” Mohammed Kaif said at the Ekamra Sports Literature Festival during a panel discussion on the topic ‘The Secularist and Cricketer.’

Mohammed Kaif was one of the fittest cricketers of his time. He further said that selection should also be based on player’s performance.

“If a player is scoring runs and taking wickets, dropping him solely on the basis that he could not pass the ‘Yo-Yo’ is not good,” Kaif added.

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Recently Ambati Rayudu made a comeback in the Indian cricket team after a couple of years. He was not picked up in the side when he failed to clear the Yo-Yo test. The shock came after he scored 600 plus runs in the Indian Premier League (IPL) before failing to clear the fitness test.

“When I was in the team, there was a test (beep test) to know the fitness of the players but never was a player dropped from the team. He would be told that his fitness level was not good and will have make improvements in the next few months.” Mohammed Kaif further added.

India recently won the five-match ODI series against Windies by 3-1.

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Mohammed Kaif applauded Indian skipper Virat Kohli for setting an example in fitness standards.

“With captain Virat Kohli setting an example in fitness standards, the team is doing very well and that is reflecting on the results.” said the 37-year-old Kaif.