Fit Mohammed Shami My Biggest Achievement, Says Conditioning Coach Shankar Basu
Mohammed Shami might get a chance after Bhuvneshwar Kumar pulled up his hamstring in the last World Cup 2019 league match against Pakistan.
Team India's strength and conditioning coach Shankar Basu considers a fit Mohammed Shami as his biggest achievement since he joined the team. Basu is with the team since 2015 and he is satisfied that he has made a fitness freak out of an injury-prone Shami. Shami might get a look into the playing XI after Bhuvneshwar Kumar was ruled out due to a hamstring injury. India are unbeaten in the tournament after they defeated arch-rivals Pakistan in their last league encounter.
A new and improved Shami didn't miss a single Test match last season due to injury and maintained his intensity throughout. When Basu was asked whether he considered Shami his biggest achievement, he replied "probably you can say that."
Basu further mentioned that Shami has had a testing last year due to personal issues and fitness problems, but he came back strong.
"And come to think of it, he failed a fitness test last year and also had some issues in his personal life. Once he came back, he started training with a vengeance. I had told Shami that there is no point of training hard for 20 days. You have to train consistently. Now training is his lifestyle. Look at how his pace never drops even in the final test of a five-game series," Basu told PTI.
Basu then gave a sneak peek into Shami's lifestyle that has gone for a complete overhaul. "He is a meat eater but now he has cut down on his junk food. He is probably the first example in this Indian team who has started the concept of intermittent fasting. He doesn't eat a lot during the first half of the day but eats well during the second half of the day. He has reduced his fat percentage," said Basu.
Speaking about the Indian captain, Virat Kohli, Basu elucidated that Virat is ready to do the boring stuff day in and day out and this is what makes him so special.
"Virat is any teacher's delight. His biggest attribute is that he is ready to do boring stuff every single day of the year. He knows his body and if he is training, he will have 100 questions with regards to routines. Once he gets the answers, he follows them with all sincerity," Basu added.
Another player who has shown remarkable improvement is Jasprit Bumrah. Basu praised him for raising the bar to an altogether different level.
"Bumrah wasn't one of the fittest guys when he came into the team. Today he is in that top bracket due to his sheer hard work, proper diet, good sleeping pattern. From 137 kmph speed, he now regularly clocks 147 kmph. Ditto for Bhuvi who bowls 140 clicks," said Basu, who couldn't have been happier that there's been no injury issue for any of the fast bowlers during the season," he added.
India's next fixture is against a struggling Afghanistan side who are yet to open their account in the ongoing World Cup 2019.
(With PTI inputs)