Bad air quality may force Indian cricketers to hit the gym before Delhi T20
With the Air Quality Index (AQI) not showing much signs of improvement in the national capital, the Indian players could give hardcore outdoor training sessions at the Arun Jaitley Stadium a miss and spend more time at the gym before Sunday's opening T20I against Bangladesh. Team India is set to arrive on October 31 and have two training sessions planned. Both the sessions on November 1 and 2 are from 2 pm to 5 pm But it could turn into optional sessions.
Speaking to IANS, sources in the know of developments said that a final call will be taken after taking a look at the weather on Friday and Saturday.
"The match shouldn't be a major problem as it is a night match, but the issue is the training (set for the mornings) and you could see optional training sessions on both the days if the weather doesn't improve. This isn't a fresh season and the players have already been playing so some gym sessions should be enough to get them up and running after the Diwali break. And even if you have the senior players coming in on Saturday -- eve of the game -- it could be just to gauge the playing conditions. But again, all that depends on the weather conditions.
"We have been keeping a check on the weather forecast and while the sun didn't come out on Tuesday, it is showing sunny on Friday, so in that case, training shouldn't be a problem. Once the sun comes out, things will hopefully be sorted and in that scenario, we will have full training sessions," the source said.
A senior Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) official said that the weather could also force a slight change in training timings on Saturday as the air in the mornings are an issue in these conditions.
"To be honest, it was hurting the eyes a bit today. And while Bangladesh also have a training session for Thursday, I don't think that will take place. Also, Bangladesh could ask for a slight delay in the training timing for Saturday as they are scheduled to train from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Training in the morning would be an issue and in such a scenario and India's training could also then be pushed a little deeper," the official said.
With the air in Delhi turning 'severe' during Diwali on Sunday, there were questions asked if there would be a change to the venue of the opening T20I of the series between India and Bangladesh on Sunday, but a BCCI functionary confirmed that there would be no change and DDCA in fact started selling tickets for the opening game from Monday.