The coronavirus pandemic put an end to the cricketing action across the world. Indian cricketers, like everyone else, have been confined at home due to the lockdown. Since the end of New Zealand tour in February, India haven't played any competitive game, which means they haven't had any match practice in over two months.
However, according to a recent development, top cricketers might start skill-based outdoor training from May 18 if the restrictions are alleviated in the fourth phase of the lockdown. BCCI Treasurer Arun Dhumal told PTI that the BCCI is exploring options to see how the players can start their skill-based outdoor training provided there are favourable guidelines from the central government after May 18. Dhumal further said since players can't travel, they are looking at options to see if the players can start their skills training (net sessions) at grounds near their residences.
Dhumal added that the BCCI is in constant touch with the government. He also said that they have a roadmap in place for the players in the post-lockdown phase. If a player is allowed to have a net session, it will mean that there will only be one batsman and three net bowlers. The Indian players are currently following customised fitness drill charts provided by their trainer Nick Webb.
Dhumal also revealed that there is a customised app for players and support staff which has been provided by the BCCI for their training. The BCCI treasurer added that they have been using the app for their training purposes. He further said that all the senior Indian players and support staff have that app. Dhumal also said that unless normalcy is restored, the BCCI will not organize any camps.
On being asked if players will be asked to undergo coronavirus tests, Dhumal said that all the Indian player players are at home from the first day, practising social distancing norms. They are not in camps. However, he added that if there is a government instruction, that players would have to use the Arogya Setu App launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently.
In another recent development, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) confirmed that England players can return to training next week by following the UK government's guidelines. Some rules being put in place are no saliva to be used on the ball, players to train individually with their designated cricket balls and coaches and they must leave immediately after their training session. This could be a source of inspiration for the BCCI in trying times.