Run With It

first_imgIndian captain M.S. Dhoni’s concern over fitness is understandable but to say the team lacks high levels of fitness is wrong. It’s almost like saying Indians do not know how to run between the wickets or take difficult catches. Even Sachin Tendulkar has taken some tough catches on the rope. I hope Indians remember that. The World Cup has just started warming up and fielding will make the difference. Fielding and fitness are two different issues and Dhoni’s boys are not exactly lagging behind, though I have read some genuine concerns about the side’s bowling abilities.Indian skipper M.S.Dhoni runs out Bradley Kruger of the Netherlands off a throw from Virat Kohli.For any team, fitness and fielding are issues that should come naturally because these are integral to a player’s success on the field. A failed batsman can participate in some excellent run-outs and a failed bowler can run fast to stop some extra runs. Both eventually matter. International cricket is full of such examples.Fielding in the subcontinent is a lot different from that seen in South Africa, Australia and England. The weather here tires you out in the later stages of the game. As the match progresses, the player feels the pressure. Often, he cannot keep his eyes on the ball because he sweats profusely and cannot grip some crucial catches because the palms give way.Dhoni has a number of young players who are super fit. The Indian Premier League, where one needs to be quick with anything and everything, has also helped the Indian team. The players must make quick runs, take quick wickets and then need to stop those extra runs. They must have high levels of fitness.advertisementMany have often argued that the big scores will help a side win the day. That’s not true. Runs saved will actually make the difference between win and loss. It again boils down to fitness. Dhoni is concerned because a few catches have been dropped and some runs lost. But that has not cost him a game. Indians are cruising safely. Let the boys enjoy their game.- Jonty Rhodes has played for South Africa in four World Cups, starting 1992. The fielding legend is now a consultant with Kenya for World Cup 2011 He spoke to Shantanu Guha Ray.last_img