Australian Test hopeful, who was in contention for a place in the Brisbane Test, in case skipper Michael Clarke does not recover in time from injury, is in a critical condition after being knocked by a bouncer. Hughes was playing in the Sheffield Shield match for South Australia against New South Wales. He was on 63 when he tried to hook pace bowler Sean Abbott and was struck on the bottom left side of the head, the ball missing the helmet as Hughes turned his head around. After trying to regain composure, Hughes soon collapsed on the field, face downwards, and had to be rushed to hospital. Here’s a look at some other severe blows taken by batsmen during a game of cricket.
Nari Contractor: The former India captain’s case in the first one that instantly springs to mind. Contractor was hit on the head by a gruesome bouncer by the extremely fast Charlie Griffith during India’s tour game against Barbados in West Indies in March 1962. Contractor had to leave the field with blood coming out of his nose and ears. Reports revealed that he had fractured a skull, and Contractor actually had to undergo two life-saving operations. Famously, West Indies captain Frank Worrell was among those who donated blood for Contractor’s surgeries. Contractor eventually recovered, and though he resumed playing cricket, he was never seen in Indian whites again.
Shivnarine Chanderpaul: TheWest Indian legend was hit on the back of the helmet by a Brett Lee bouncer during the Sabina Park Test in 2008. The left-hander collapsed to the ground, and remained motionless for a while as everyone out in the field began worrying. Incredibly, Chanderpaul, renowned for being a strong character, regained his composure in a few minutes and took strike again. The southpaw, who was batting in his 80s, when the incident occurred, went on to complete one of his most incredible Test hundreds.
Alex Tudor: The former England all-rounder battled with injuries throughout his short international stint. Tudor was hit on the head from yet another dangerously rearing delivery, again from Brett Lee, during the 2002 Ashes Test at the WACA, Perth. Lee was in the middle of another pacy spell when he dug one in short to Tudor. The batsman thought it would bounce high enough, so he decided to duck under it without following the path of the ball. However, the ball rose quickly and hit him right in the face. Tudor was stretched off the field, and although he has recovered, the scars remain.
Ewen Chatfield: The New Zealander had a Test debut he would never forget, but not for memorable reasons. He was hit on the left temple by a rearing delivery from Peter Lever during the 1975 Test between New Zealand and England at Auckland. Following the impact, he fell unconscious on the ground. He was rushed to hospital, and scans revealed a hairline fracture. Chatfield, however, recovered well from the blow, and went on to forge a Test career of reasonable success.
--By A Cricket Analyst