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Cricketers and their off-field incidents.
by Gulu Ezekiel
Jan 07, 2006
Sri Lankan opener Sanath Jayasuriya was reported to have dislocated his shoulder in New Zealand after slipping in the bathroom while reaching for the shampoo.

But his is not the first freak injury that has befallen a cricketer. Here are glimpses of others from the past, some comical, some serious and one deadly.

Ian Redpath: The Australian opening batsman was an occasional medium-pacer. Playing a warm-up match against the West Indians before the first season of World Series Cricket in 1977, he leapt to celebrate the wicket of Clive Lloyd. But in the process he tore his tendons and spent the rest of the season on crutches.

Glenn McGrath: The entire Ashes series may have turned on the Australian opening bowler missing out on the second Test at Edgbaston. With minutes to go for the toss, he trod on a cricket ball and injured his ankle during a training session of rugby. England won by 2 runs. They also won the fourth Test at Trent Bridge where McGrath was again missing through injury.

Graeme Welch: The Derbyshire all-rounder suffered a freak eye injury on the way to a county match in 2004. He and his son were imitating John Travolta's dance moves while listening to the car radio. Welch's young son jabbed him in the eye, temporarily blinding him and forcing him off the road. He had to miss the county match as a result.

William Wilfrid Whysall: The England wicket-keeper who played four Test matches in the 1920s suffered a more tragic fate. Known as 'Dodger', he lost his life at the age of 43 a fortnight after falling on a dance floor and injuring his elbow. Septicaemia set in and although a blood transfusion was performed, he passed away.

Vivek Razdan: The Indian medium pacer suffered an injury in the most innocent of circumstances while training at the MRF Pace Foundation in Chennai in 1985. As he was posting a letter, his hand got caught in the box and the result was a broken finger.

Fanie de Villiers: The South African all-rounder had a near-death experience in 1990, before he had appeared in a Test match. While preparing the pitch for his army team, a vat of unbleached lime exploded in a chemical reaction with boiling water. For weeks he was blinded and came out of hospital after weeks of painful operations.

Gary Gilmour: The Australian all-rounder of the 70s was lucky to get away scot-free after turning his arm over in a hotel room, practicing his bowling action. He got his hand caught in the blades of the ceiling fan, but managed to get himself free before any serious damage was done.

Fred Titmus: England's off spinner lost four toes after swimming too close to the rotors of a motor boat during England's tour of the West Indies in 1968. He came back to play Test cricket till 1975 at the age of 43.

Graeme Smith: The night before the second Test at the Eden Gardens in October 2004, the South African captain had a narrow escape when a car ran over his foot outside the doors of the team hotel in Kolkata. Intense treatment all night allowed him to play in the match the next morning. He scored 0 and 71 and South Africa lost by eight wickets.

 
More Views by Gulu Ezekiel
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