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Australian all-rounder Marcus Stoinis is a fitness enthusiast who is very particular about his food intake. He is currently following a ketogenic diet, which is high in fat and low in carbohydrates. To ensure he gets the right food during his stay in India, he has employed a personal chef who travels with him across the country. According to a report on cricket.com.au, Mumbai-born Velton Saldanha, a chef trained in French cuisine, cooks meals for Stoinis out of the Australian team's hotel kitchens.
Fitness freak Marcus Stoinis travelling with personal Indian Chef during the World Cup season
Marcus Stoinis has always been strict with his food and preparation and was inspired to follow the ketogenic diet after observing some of the Indian boys doing it. The Australian team has its chef who oversees food preparation, but Stoinis has gone a step further to ensure peak performance. His personal chef has cooked a variety of dishes for him, such as gluten-free banana bread, shepherd's pie with roasted cauliflower mash, and a roast butter chicken that combines Saldanha's French training with his Indian heritage.
"Garlic naan is out. Gluten-free banana bread and shepherd's pie with roasted cauliflower mash are in. A roast butter chicken, the intersection of Saldanha's French training and his Indian heritage has also been a hit," the report said.
"Stoinis is getting by on baked oats – at least for the small carbohydrate portion of his meticulously curated diet. By the end of the World Cup, Saldanha might be able to sell the 'Stoinis Oats' as a standalone dish," the report added.
The 34-year-old all-rounder, who has struggled to play consistently in this tournament, has invested in a personal chef because he wants to take control of as many things as possible through his cricketing career. He believes investing in himself and his environment is essential to playing at his best. He does not consider the cost of hiring a personal chef or other professionals, such as his own batting coach or sports psychologist, as a waste of money.
"I want to play for as long as I can. I want to take control of as many things as I can through my cricketing career. We travel a lot, and we're obviously away from our comfort zone. We're in different time zones. We're in different beds. We're in different hotels – we're not exactly by the beach in Perth, having a coffee and that sort of stuff," Stoinis said.
Stoinis has been enjoying baked oats infused with protein, one of his favourite dishes. By the end of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023, Saldanha might be able to sell the 'Stoinis Oats' as a standalone dish. Stoinis met Saldanha during this year's Indian Premier League on a recommendation from his Lucknow Supergiants teammate and India star KL Rahul.
Saldanha founded Mumbai's Chutney Collective during the COVID-19 pandemic. Marcus Stoinis acknowledges that travelling across different time zones and being away from his comfort zone can impact his performance. However, he is willing to invest in his own career to play for as long as he can.