Ravi Shastri, the head coach of the Indian cricket team, has made it clear that every player needs to pass the Yo-Yo endurance test to be eligible for national selection.
Echoing the views of his coach, skipper Virat Kohli has said that crossing the Yo-Yo hurdle with a qualifying mark of 16.1 or better is a must, to break into the national side.
Although most of the BCCI officials and the Indian team management are on the same page with regards to Yo-Yo test, board treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry seemed to have a reservation against it.
“At which forum was the decision taken to have a minimum score on the Yo-yo test as a prerequisite for selection into a BCCI selected team? Who all were present in the meeting that decided this? Have Minutes been recorded of the said meeting?” Chaudhry wrote in a mail seeking clarifications from the CoA, as quoted by The Indian Express.
Chaudhry also asked whether the players were informed about the significance of the test. He also brings up the need for players to be familiarised with the test as it plays a big role in clearing it.
“It is pretty much unfair to note when one hears that Mr. Rayudu took the yo-yo test for the first time only when the test was conducted for his selection. If the players have not even been informed about it officially then the imposition of this criteria is wrong, unjust and reeks of arbitrariness. Test familiarity can impact results, meaning individuals that are unfamiliar with the test procedure may achieve less than optimal scores,” he added.
Recently, Ambati Rayudu was left out from India’s ODI squad for England tour after he failed to clear the Yo-Yo Test. Interestingly, Suresh Raina, who has failed this test previously, was called in as Rayudu’s replacement as he passed the Yo-Yo obstacle with flying colors.
Before Rayudu, India speedster Mohammed Shami was omitted from the one-off Test against Afghanistan for the same reason. Delhi pacer Navdeep Saini had replaced Shami for the historic Test in Bangalore. Moreover, Sanju Samson was dropped from India ‘A’ squad for the tri-series in England involving England Lions and West Indies 'A'. Samson was replaced by Ishan Kishan in the touring squad.
“If the player has had an increased workload in the past few weeks and is somewhat fatigued, would he not be scoring less on the recovery tests?” Chaudhry asked the COA.
Yo-Yo test is not used as criteria for selection in NBA basketball as it is deemed that individuals are different physiologically, and can’t be really compared.
Highlighting the same point, Chaudhry wrote: “Were the factors in a person’s physiology that impact the results of the test studied and considered? How much does it have to do with genetics and how much with training? Does the oxygen transport system in a person’s body and the capacity to contract a large number of muscle fibres simultaneously have an impact on the result? This is a decision that impacts careers … There must be some scientific evidence that would have been relied upon when the decision was taken.”
Chaudhry also expressed his concern over the possible chaos the team could face with regard to the Yo-Yo test in future.
“We still don’t know whether it would be necessary say in the case of replacement players when someone gets injured in middle of tour. What if a key player has a niggle of sorts that prevents him from taking the test? What happens if the best player of the team has a mild niggle in the knee but can play the Test match that starts in two days but because of the knee niggle, he is not in a position to or is not advised to take a Yo-yo test at all?” Anirudh Chaudhry’s mail concluded.
(With inputs from The Indian Express)