Team India are focusing on building workload for the bowlers, who had an extensive run in the IPL, and close-in catching ahead of next week’s World Test Championship final.
Among the bowlers, while the likes of Mohammed Siraj, Shardul Thakur, Axar Patel, Jaydev Unadkat and Umesh Yadav were part of the first batch to travel to England, pace spearhead Mohammed Shami’s departure was delayed because of the rain-affected IPL final.
The middle-order mainstay Virat Kohli also joined the squad a few days after the first batch, including the coaching staff led by Rahul Dravid, arrived here. Kohli joined the camp on Monday along with Cheteshwar Pujara, who linked up with the squad in England as he was busy playing County Championship for Sussex.
The team is expected to have a few practice sessions at the Arundel Castle Cricket Club in Sussex ahead of the big final against Australia starting next Wednesday.
“The preparation has been good so far. The initial bit was to ease into the practice session but the last two sessions have been pretty happy — I think we pushed them a little bit. Just adding a little bit of workload for the bowlers, preparing them for the Test match,” India’s bowling coach Paras Mhambrey in a video released by the BCCI.
“(We are) happy with the conditions, I think it is a lovely ground, (it is) kind of what you can expect. The weather is holding up, it has been sunny, a little windy, a little chill but something that we have to get used to (when) playing in England,” he said.
India’s fielding coach T. Dilip said the focus will be on close-in catching since the running part of the fitness drill was covered in the just-concluded IPL.
“The players have been coming from an IPL... what we understood and got out of that is things (like) ground fielding have been covered, so the focus here was more on the volume of catching, especially when you are talking about close-in catching, the slip catching and the flat catches. These are the catches that we tend to increase the volume (of),” he said.
Mhambrey said while the bowlers will get some rest in the days leading up to the WTC final, the group is determined to extract the maximum benefits from the training sessions. “If you look at it, we have three quality sessions in which we can push them in and try to get the best out of every session we have,” he said.