Irfan Pathan (TOI Photo)
MUMBAI: Former pacer Irfan Pathan believes the Indian team management will have to focus on the bowlers and be “extremely careful” with regard to injury management once the players hit the ground after the coronavirus-forced hiatus.
Players in India haven’t been able to practise since March 25 due to the countrywide lockdown imposed to contain the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic.
It was pacer Shardul Thakur who became the first Indian team member to resume training after he bowled in the nets in Boisar in Palghar district last month.
Pathan, a former left-handed seamer, feels that any team, including an IPL one, will have to be careful with the bowlers, who would be more prone to injury having been out of action for more than two months.
“Injury management is the most important thing. We will have to focus on all the bowlers,” Pathan, who has played 29 Tests and 120 ODIs for India, said on Star Sports show ‘Cricket Connected’.
The ICC also recently came up with specific guidelines for bowlers, suggesting that teams would need to exercise caution over bowlers’ workloads to avoid a serious injury like stress fracture of the spine as players get ready to resume training.
“In a squad of 15, every team has 4 to 6 bowlers. Be it an IPL team, Indian team or any international or domestic team, we will have to be extremely careful about injury management as our boys have been out of action for a while,” he said.
Pathan was part of the Indian T20 team that lifted the 2007 World Cup.