BCCI prompted to send a 26-player squad for India's Tour of Australia later this year (Photo: Twitter @BCCI_Media)

A team needs to follow a strict routine when they go on a tour. A strict schedule is very important for a team to maintain. It allows for the best conditioning and preparation for the team. 

Lack of correct conditioning and preparation can be very disastrous for the team. Any foreign tour is preceded by a training camp. It is set up to ensure that the correct players are in the playing 11. Many a time, squad selection is the key factor in the path towards winning the match. 

Now with the COVID-19 pandemic hampering all the cricketing season for this year, this method is tough to implement. All countries are preparing 14-day quarantine for international players before participating in any tournament. 

India might send a large contingent this year due to COVID-19 pandemic

A mandatory 14-day quarantine period in Adelaide before the start of India’s marquee Test series against Australia is present. This might prompt the BCCI to send a jumbo squad much like the West Indies and Pakistan in England. The former chairman of selectors MSK Prasad feels the same. This is a new approach many teams are following, as a precaution is always better than any mishap. 

According to Prasad, it might be a good idea to have at least a 26-strong squad for the tour. Down Under where both India and the ‘A’ team could be clubbed together for a month. 

“The team management and seniors will have an opportunity to look at the youngsters who are knocking the doors,” Prasad states.

“In this process, you can also monitor those players who can be the potential guys for different spots in the future.”

A squad of 26 will ensure that India can be divided into two groups. This ensures that a warm-up game could be played during the quarantine period.

“Since we cannot trust the net bowlers about their exposure to COVID, it would be ideal to go with a large contingent as we can be assured of all the players’ safety as they will be in a bio-secure environment.”