The Yo Yo Test

The Yo Yo Test

Suresh Raina had made a comeback into the Indian team. He took a late-evening flight to Bangalore. He had just played a Ranji Trophy match for Uttar Pradesh but hadn’t batted in the second innings as he wasn’t fully fit. Next morning, he took the Yo Yo Test, flunked it and was sent back home in an embarrassing way. After some more matches, he was asked to take the test again but flunked then also, failing to reach the mandatory level of fitness which has been set as a standard by the Indian team,

Ambati Rayudu has always been very low on BCCI’s playing XI options. He was always the 4th or 5th option that came to mind. But one good IPL season, and he finally made it to the Indian team after 9 years being seen as only a mediocre option. Can you imagine the joy he had been feeling then, and can you imagine that joy being taken away from you because you couldn’t run one more shuttle? Rayudu failed the Yo Yo Test and we won’t be seeing him in Indian colours anytime soon.

Mohammad Shami has been in the press for all the wrong reasons recently. First the wife issue, then the poor IPL form, and now failing in this much dreaded Yo Yo Test. Imagine how he must be feeling! He gets selected in one format of the game and that too gets taken away from him because he failed a test with a name similar to a slang rap sensation! The Yo-Yo Test denied Shami a chance to make a comeback to cricket and maybe renew his poor reputation.

We have been talking about the stalwarts of the game who have slipped up while taking the Yo-Yo Test, but what about the youngsters? Sanju Samson couldn’t play the tri-series of India A against Australia and England because he couldn’t pass the Yo-Yo Test. Let’s not forget that Sanju is the player his IPL team relied on to anchor the innings ahead of Rahane, Stokes, Tripathi and Darcy Short. Then what is the harm in playing him?

The Yo-Yo Test – How It Works

When I first heard about the Yo-Yo Test, I thought cricketers must have had to rap while batting or bowling! But of course, it’s not that. In fact, it’s quite complicated. The picture below will help you understand better.

A Yo Yo Test involves a player shuttling between two cones(B and C) and for recovery, walking from B to A and back. A player starts on B when the first beep goes, and runs to C before the second beep goes. He then tries to run back to the B cone where he started before the third beep goes. This whole run from B to C and back is known as a ‘shuttle’.

There are 23 speed levels, but no one has even gotten close to the 23rd level yet. Each level has different amounts of shuttles to be run. If a player fails to reach a cone before the beep goes, he gets an official warning. 3 official warnings usually mark the end of a Yo-Yo Test.

Different countries have set different benchmarks for passing the Yo-Yo Test. What you have to understand is that India is not the only country conducting this test and certainly not the best conductors of it. Pakistan, West Indies and New Zealand all have higher benchmarks for selection in the team.

I think that Yo-Yo Test is okay as long as players receive a second chance. They should give players a chance to practice hard and try again.