It is very important to stay hydrated and well energized during the game. Hence, cricketers should consume carbohydrate snacks and drinks to maintain blood glucose levels. Regular supply of drinks, sweets, fruits and small amounts of proteins are essential all through the meal. These snacks should contain small amounts of fat to provide energy to the players.
Hydration is important, especially during hot or windy conditions. Drink breaks are given every hour of the match. Players should keep sipping on sports drinks and water at regular intervals – 250 to 500 ml of fluid is suggested. Players should also weigh themselves before and after the game and any weight loss should be replenished with equivalent volumes of fluid. In fact, this is a good habit to follow during training sessions too and use carbohydrate or electrolyte rich drinks. Players should use personalised hydration strategies where a player can learn about sweat rate and know how to counter the same with proper fluid replenishment. Sweat sodium testing is also a useful way to know about fluid replenishment.
Match formats include breaks for lunch and tea. Players should consume carbohydrates and lean protein during these breaks to keep up the energy level. Suggested food include fresh or toasted sandwiches, rolls with lean meat and salad, tomato based carbohydrate dishes, fruit salad, fruits, smoothies, yoghurt etc.
Remember, bananas are an outstanding source of energy. Hence, consuming a banana during breaks is a good way to keep up the energy level.
Don’t opt for high sugar items like cakes or sweets during the tea or lunch break. Eat a bowl of curd or some fruits if you have a sweet tooth.