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by Chinmoy Roy Wednesday 5 June 2019
Supreme physical fitness, ultimate mental resilience and of course, the technical know how to combat the omnipresent unpredictability during the climb. Possessing these three qualities is a must with a capital M for the team aspiring to lift the ICC World Cup. When Neville Cardous penned his immortals, the word 'fitness' didn't exist in the cricket dictionary.
Then outcome of a match was determined purely on the strength of cricketing skill. In the era of Virat Kohli even a touch artist like David Gower would write in his column the defining role fitness plays in the outcome of a match. Ben Stokes pulled off a blinder in the curtain raiser. It is quality fitness work that launched Stokes in the air to create the magic moment of the reverse cup one handed beauty.
Make no mistake, the winner has to sustain their level of skill for 44 long days with great intensity. Fitness will play a key role in sustaining that intensity. Pundits have short listed England, India, Australia and South Africa as contenders to lift the coveted cup. Let us consider that all four teams are quite even-stevens when it comes to cricketing skills.
Here, while zooming on the favourites we can recall Aussie Cricketing Guru Greg Chappell's observation. Chappell said," when two teams are at par in skill the fitter team on that given day will win." Quite logical but having said that, from the viewpoint of sports science, reaching peak performance at the right time hinges on certain factors. Let's explore them.
© Cricket World 2019