'Idea is to get into four-day mode'

'Idea is to get into four-day mode'
With just over a week to go before they play their first Ranji Trophy game of the season, Karnataka have begun their preparations in their quest to regain the championship.

The 2017-18 edition kick starts from Friday and Karnataka are in action in the second round of matches when they face Assam in Mysuru from October 14. A 35-member probables list was announced by the Karnataka State Cricket Association on September 2. Under the watchful eyes of newly-appointed coach P V Shashikanth and assistant coach G K Anil Kumar, majority of the players from the probables were involved in a three-day practice game at the Alur ground last week.

The group had its first ‘nets’ session here at the ‘B’ ground of the Chinnaswamy stadium on Wednesday. Shashikanth said the initial challenge was to get the players’ focus back on the longer format of the game as most of the probables were involved in the recently-concluded Karnataka Premier League T20 tournament.

“Basic idea is to get them back to the four-day mode. We played one three-day game in Alur because we’ll be playing our fourth game of the group stage there. So we wanted the boys to get acclimatised. We are playing a three-day game here at Chinnaswamy from tomorrow (Thursday). It was a difficult task to get the players out of the T20 atmosphere. We are happy with the preparations,” said Shashikanth.

On Wednesday, 27 out of the 35 members reported to the training session. It is learnt that India batsman K L Rahul joined the team and had a chat with the players. Rahul, who didn’t train, will join the Indian side soon for the three-match T20 series against Australia starting October 7.

The experienced duo of Karun Nair and Mayank Agarwal were also missing as they are part of India A and Board President’s XI.

Assistant coach Anil said special attention was given to fielding during the practice sessions.

“Fielding is something we have really emphasized on. It has to be
worked on,” he said.

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