RCB skipper Virat Kohli revealed that his side have been training in a pretty optimal manner and not pushing themselves too much in order to minimize the risk of getting injured. Having trained for almost two weeks now, Kohli expressed that he was pleased with the team’s progress.
The universal lockdown enforced by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has posed many challenges to athletes around the world, none more so than keeping themselves in top shape. The six-month layoff has, naturally, made athletes’ bodies a tad more rusty and fragile and thus even prior to training, all IPL coaches were wary of the fact that players might have to be re-integrated back into the sport slowly but steadily, to prevent uncalled-for injuries.
Having landed in the UAE in late August, and having successfully also completed the mandatory six-day quarantine, the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) players have trained for close to two weeks now, but skipper Virat Kohli, in a video posted by the franchise’s Twitter handle, revealed that all players have been taking it easy in order to minimize the risk of getting injured. Given the long lay-off, Kohli acknowledged the importance of training in a balanced manner.
"We don't want to push anyone into a niggle or an injury because we understand it's been a while away from the game. So I think we moved ahead in a balanced manner,” Kohli said in a video posted by RCB’s Twitter handle.
"We don't want to be a maniac like doing 6 sessions in six days. We gave ample off time to the boys which we will continue to do along the course of these next few training sessions also.”
The half-year-long lay-off also invoked fears that some - if not a lot of - players might show up to training unfit and out of shape, but the RCB skipper revealed that he was delighted with the fitness levels of his teammates. The RCB skipper expressed his satisfaction over the outdoor sessions but acknowledged that there was room for improvement.
"From fitness point of view everyone is looking great, everyone is in good shape. It's a matter of feeling good and I think I felt good from the first session onwards.
"Obviously, there are few things that you try and rectify along the way and once you reach your optimum mind set and you enter competition you just want to stay in that as much as possible."
Having finished eighth out of eight teams last season, RCB would be hoping for a drastic improvement in their results heading into this season, but the skipper sounded confident and optimistic ahead of the tournament. Kohli revealed that his side worked their way through the training step by step and revealed that he was ecstatic over how the team was shaping up.
"First few days we are just getting our eye in, getting back in thick of things after 5 months, it's a bit different, try and get into the frame of mind which you usually want to be. It takes a bit of time, in these session now we are mostly batting in the middle, trying to figure out hitting angles, understanding the pace of wicket and all these. I am very very happy with how the team is shaping up.”
Kohli's RCB will start their IPL 2020 campaign against Sunrisers Hyderabad at the Dubai International Stadium on September 21.