Like the Yo-Yo test, which was introduced by Indian cricket team’s strength and conditioning Coach Shankar Basu in 2017, Cricket South Africa (CSA) will mandate a fitness test clause in players contract, which will set a minimum standard for selection.
Similar to the Yo-Yo Test, where every national player has to reach a certain level in the test before they can be selected, and also for many players in the IPL, the clause introduced by CSA will examine the fitness for their national players closely.
Guys need to keep up fitness: South Africa coach Mark Boucher
The initiative to introduce the clause was taken after a special fitness camp for four players held in January that cast their international futures in doubt, as well as fears that a strict 21-day lockdown in South Africa could leave a number of other players below the required standard, according to a report in Reuters.
South Africa head coach Mark Boucher asserted that every player will have to keep up fitness level as the new clause will be inserted. He also said there have been cases in the past with below-par fitness level being selected.
“Guys need to keep up their fitness because we will be inserting new fitness clauses in contracts,” Boucher confirmed via an audio statement released by CSA.
“In the recent past we have seen that players who are not fit enough don’t get selected. They are professionals and they need to do what they have to do,” he added.
Break will give time to players to overcome niggle: Mark Boucher
South Africa’s tour to India was called off due to the widespread novel coronavirus pandemic. The decision to call off the tour was taken by the boards after the first match in Dharmashala was washed out. The CSA and BCCI, however, in agreement have said that they will re-schedule the tour after season resumes.
Boucher believes the break will serve as a good time for the players to overcome their niggle besides spending time with their family.
“The plan was always to give the guys some time off to spend with the family. It also gives them the chance to get over a few niggles.
“The first two or three weeks is always key, to refresh physically and mentally. We have put in some programmes around the house for the guys to keep them fit and strong.
“They need to keep their discipline. There will be testing after the lockdown period.”
South Africa’s next assignment against Sri Lanka in June has come under clouds due to the pandemic. It will most likely be called off.