Mumbai Indians are now reaping the benefits of foresight. As part of their preparations for IPL Season 2, the team had sent a 10-member squad to South Africa last month. The team also included Chennai-based trainer Ramji Srinivasan, who has been roped in for the season.
The camp was a chance for Ramji to consult with fielding coach Jonty Rhodes and team mentor Shaun Pollock and devise T20-specific training drills. Consequently, it has turned out to be a big advantage for the Mumbai outfit as the IPL has shifted base to South Africa.
“It was far-sightedness on the part of the team management to send us there to work with Pollock and Rhodes,” said Ramji.
“It was a positive experience. Working with Pollock and Rhodes, I was able to design some specific drills and exercise routines suited for T20. The camp focused on technical as well as physical aspects of the T20 game. Rhodes was concentrating on the fielding drills and the specific set of muscles which need to be strengthened.
“For example, a close-in fielder needs tremendous agility during a T20 game. So with Rhodes’ inputs I was able to devise exercises to improve their core-strength as well as building their anaerobic capacities to help in fast movement.
“Pollock was concentrating on the bowling and batting drills. He talked about the muscles that need to be strengthened for bowling short spells. Anaerobic fitness again plays a huge role. The new fitness drills for the team is designed to meet these requirements and the experience with the South African greats gave me valuable insights,” said Ramji.Ramji feels the “pleasant” South Africa summer doesn’t mean the players will have it easy.
“In India the players would have faced hot and humid conditions, while in SA, it’s relatively pleasant,” he said.