More than half of the 31 players attending the Pakistan Cricket Board’s boot camp at the Kakul Military Academy in preparation for the tour to England have failed fitness tests in the camp.
According to details from the camp four players, Test captain, Misbah-ul-Haq, senior batsman, Younis Khan, Fawad Alam and opener, Shaan Masood have been outstanding in the fitness drills carried out so far in the camp since last week.
“What is of concern is that apart from few players rest have just failed to satisfy the military trainers and the Pakistan team fielding coach and fitness trainer Grant Ludan in the fitness drills,” a source told PTI.
He said the fitness drills carried out by the military trainers have included long distance running, 100 metre sprints, hurdles sprint and steep climbing.
“Misbah, Younis, Shaan and Fawad have maintained a consistent standard,” he said.
He said after the early results in the camp the military trainers and Ludan have now devised a plan for the other players which means they now have to wake up at 7 am and do the drills till 12 noon.
“The PCB has made it very clear that fitness will be a key element while deciding the touring squad for England,” the source said.
He said after the disappointing results of the fitness tests held at the national cricket academy in Lahore before the boot camp the board is very serious about players meeting required fitness standards.
“One reason for the decline in the team’s performances in the limited over formats in recent months has been a general low level of fitness among the players,” he added.
He said this fact had been highlighted by outgoing coach, Waqar Younis and the senior manager, Intikhab Alam in their reports after the Asia Cup and World T20.
The selectors had initially invited 35 players for the camp sans senior players, Ahmed Shehzad, Umar Akmal, Umar Gul and Shahid Afridi.
But now leg spinner, Yasir Shah, senior player Mohammad Hafeez and Haris Sohail, Zulfiqar Babar and Emad Wasim have all been ruled out of the boot camp due to fitness issues.