Like millions of other cricket fans around the World I was saddened when I woke this morning to the news that Australian batsman Phil Hughes had passed away after he had been struck on the head by a bouncer in a Sheffield Shield game two days ago. At just a few days shy of his 26th birthday one can only imagine how devastated his family and friends must be. It is another reminder of one of my favourite sayings: ‘you just never know what is around the corner’.
Tragedy can strike without warning.
I am sure helmet manufacturers will carefully consider whether any small change to the design of the helmet could have made a difference. We will never know. I just hope that, notwithstanding this tragedy, the rules of cricket are not changed to outlaw the bouncer. It would I fear only be counterproductive. Batsman might stop wearing helmets and would be taken by surprise if the ball, as sometimes happens slips from the bowler’s hand, and flies straight at the head of a batsman.
My thoughts and prayers are with Phil Hughes family and friends and indeed with Sean Abbott who was the bowler who sent down the fateful delivery.