Mental fatigue is real, high time BCCI looks into scheduling and take care of players: Kris Srikkanth

Mental fatigue is real, high time BCCI looks into scheduling and take care of players: Kris Srikkanth

Indian players have spent considerable time over the last year in bio-secure environments away from family.

Krishnamachari Srikkanth
Krishnamachari Srikkanth. (Photo by Sanjeev Verma/ Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

Former India opener Kris Srikkanth threw his weight behind the Indian players, stating that bio-bubble fatigue and mental health issues need to be given the due importance they deserve given the amount of cricket is being scheduled in recent times.

Srikkanth’s comments came after Indian pacer Jasprit Bumrah opened up following India’s second defeat in the ongoing T20 World Cup, citing the difficulties and challenges of playing the sport in the middle of a global pandemic. Indian players have spent considerable time over the last year in bio-secure environments.

“I totally back the players, mental fatigue is a real thing and it’s high time @BCCI looks into their scheduling and make sure they take care of all the players, I back the Indian players and it’s high time we take care of them!” Srikkanth said in a social media post.

India entered the ongoing multi-team event in the emirates on the back of a packed schedule. They played Australia from November 2020 to January 2021 in an all-format series before another all-format England series at home in February-March. Following that was the 2021 IPL, which commenced on April 9 but had to be postponed midway through in early May owing to the emergence of Covid-19 cases inside the bio-secure bubble.

In the time elapsed between IPL resumption in September this year, India played the World Test Championship final in June, which preceded the five-Test series against England from July to September. The fifth and final Test in Manchester was abandoned in the aftermath of Covid-19 cases in the Indian camp.

While that did give the players a brief breather, they almost immediately embarked on the second leg of the IPL that ran between September 19 to October 15. Only nine days later, on October 24, India played Pakistan in their T20 World Cup opener. After the conclusion of the World Cup, India will host New Zealand for three T20Is and two Tests, followed by an all-format away tour of South Africa running between December 2021 to January 2022.

Bumrah highlighted the issues on Sunday after India’s eight-wicket loss against New Zealand. “Absolutely, sometime as you need a break. You miss your family. You’ve been on the road for six months. Obviously staying in a bubble and staying away from your family for such a long period of time does play a role. The BCCI also tried their best to make us feel comfortable … It’s a difficult time. There’s a pandemic going on, so we try to adapt but sometimes bubble fatigue, mental fatigue also creeps in.”