Bengaluru FC delve into Delhi Capitals bio-bubble knowledge to help their ISL campaign

Former ISL champions Bengaluru FC have picked up a few lessons from their sister team in IPL, Delhi Capitals.

By Naveen Peter

Though their season might not have reached the desired summit, Indian Premier League side Delhi Capitals will look back at IPL 2020 with fond memories.

After all, it was a year that saw them underline their credentials as serious title contenders.

Away from cricket, one team that’s eager to learn from Delhi Capitals’ experience is their sister entity in football, Bengaluru FC.

Part of the same JSW Group, the former Indian Super League (ISL) champions - BFC - are keen to know more about life inside a bio-bubble from their cricketing counterparts.

“We learn from the stories. Consider Delhi Capitals. We are getting to know from their management and the staff how they are finding certain things difficult to manage, that too when it’s a two-month tournament,” Bengaluru CEO, Mandar Tamhane told the Olympic Channel.

“But when we’re looking at a four-five month tournament here in the ISL, things are different. The impact (on the players) could be slightly negative which we need to be aware of. We need to know where we need to keep adding a few things.”

To understand how things function inside a bio-bubble, Bengaluru FC had a few of their staff members spend time with the Delhi Capitals side in UAE during IPL 2020. 

While the staff members returned with some tangible inputs that the team management wasted no time in implementing in their bubble in Goa, there’s been an emphasis on ensuring that mental health is a priority.

“I think this is something that everyone agrees upon. In fact, when we discussed this with our head coach Carles Cuadrat, he was fine with the idea,” said the team’s media manager Kunaal Majgaonkar.

“He’s been talking about how mental toughness will be a determining factor between teams that win games this season and teams that don’t. 

“We have been speaking with our physiotherapist Sénen Alvarez as well. He’s someone who’s been with the Spanish Olympic contingent in the past. He too believes that this is the way forward because the athletes need this. 

“Alvarez is someone who’s been in games and a situation where these aspects have helped a lot. And given the situation we find ourselves in, the boys will need it more.”

Taking on from the Delhi Capitals’ set-up, Bengaluru FC have arranged a recreational room inside their bio-bubble to help the players take their minds off football.

While this will include various arcade and indoor games, the team has ensured that they address the players’ interest and will be setting up a library too.

“At the core lies our mindset where we treat everyone involved like family,” Majgaonkar said.

“Team bonding activities have always been a part of the setup. Be it fun quizzes or someone walking up to the stage and entertaining the crowd. It’s all about getting to know each other.

“We have sourced the players’ images as two-year-olds. We plan on showing them on the screen in one of our activities. We also have guys like Dimas Delgado here with his guitar while some have bought a guitar to take lessons,” he said.

Bengaluru FC kick off their ISL campaign against FC Goa on Sunday 22nd November.

Find out full details and TV schedules for all their fixtures here.