Before Watson, 7 Cricketers Who Braved Injuries to Keep Going

Here’s a list of players who have played through a cricket match defying their injuries.

4 min read
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Shane Watson batting with an injured knee for Chennai Super Kings in the IPL 2019 Final against Mumbai Indians became the talking point after the end of the game. Warner’s heroics were praised by fans and cricket experts on Twitter.

After the game, the CSK Twitter handle posted a tweet saying that this was ‘GOD LEVEL’ dedication from the former Australian cricketer.

As it turned out, Chennai Super Kings went onto lose the game by just a run as Mumbai Indians were crowned IPL champions for the fourth time.

Watson, however, was not the only cricketer who has played on with an injury.


Here’s a list of players who have played through a cricket match defying their respective injuries.

Anil Kumble

The 2002 Antigua Test against West Indies will be remembered fondly because of former Indian skipper Anil Kumble who bowled with a bandage over his injured jaw. He dismissed Brian Lara in the first innings and in the build up to the dismissal, bowled 14 overs on trot.

Earlier in the Test match, Kumble was hit by a steep bouncer from Mervyn Dillion which hit his jaw. Despite spiting blood, Kumble carried on batting for 20 minutes after his initial treatment.

The test match ended in a draw but the picture of Anil Kumble coming out to bowl with a bandaged face is still fresh in the memory of Indian fans.


Gary Kirsten

Batting against the express pace of Shoaib Akhtar in the Lahore Test match in 2003, Gary Kirsten was hit by a bouncer. Kirsten who was batting on 53 had to immediately leave the ground and was taken for treatment.

Scans further revealed that he had a broken nose. However, with South Africa in a spot of bother at 146/4 in the second innings, Kirsten walked out to bat and scored a valiant 46 before getting out.

Pakistan won the Test match, but Kirsten was praised by one and all for his heroic act.


Graeme Smith

One of the most successful captains in international cricket, South Africa’s Graeme Smith came up with an another example where a cricketer braved his injury and played on for his team.

In the 2009 Sydney Test match against Australia, a pacy delivery from Mitchell Johnson hit Smith and broke his left hand. He was batting on 30 and had to be immediately rushed to the hospital for treatment. The Proteas were bowled out for 327 as Smith couldn’t continue batting.

Scoring 257 in their second innings, Australia set South Africa a scored of 376 runs to win. The visitors were 9 wickets down with over 100 runs to get. While everyone thought the match was over, Smith walked out to bat at number 10 and batted for 17 deliveries.

Makhaya Ntini batted with patience at the other end. Johnson finally dismissed Smith as Australia won the match by 103 runs with 10 balls left in the Test match.


Bert Sutcliffe

In a Test match between South Africa and New Zealand, Bert Sutcliffe showcased an instance of brilliance as he batted after he was hit around his right ear. His ear lobe was split and he had developed a swelling behind his ear.

He was taken for treatment and thankfully there was no fracture despite it being a severe injury. However, seeing his teammates falling early, Sutcliffe decided to come out and bat again. He scored 80 runs and added a crucial stand with New Zealand batsman Bob Blair.

Though South Africa won the Test match by 132 runs, Sutcliffe’s courage and bravery is still praised by the cricket fraternity.


Malcolm Marshall

Malcolm Marshall was one of the most feared fast bowlers in the 80s. He was a part of a group for West Indies that had the likes of Michael Holding, Andy Roberts and Joel Garner.

In 1984, Marshall’s left thumb thumb broke into two pieces in the very first day of the Headingly Test, but that did not hinder him from coming out to bat after Joel Garner was dismissed as the ninth wicket.

England had scored 270 in the first innings and West Indies managed to take the lead. Larry Gomes was unbeaten on 96 and that was when Marshall held firm at the other end as Gomes reached his century.

Before coming out to bat with a broken thumb, Marshall picked up 7/53 opening the bowling for West Indies.


Colin Cowdrey

The 1963 Test match between England and West Indies provided another instance when a cricketer braved his injury and played a pivotal role in helping his team churning out a draw.

West Indies scored 301 and 229 in their two innings while England scored 297 in their first. In the process, Colin Cowdrey was injured batting at the top of the order and had to leave the field for treatment.

The England batters took them close to a win without Cowdrey and brought the equation down to 8 runs to win in the final over. When the ninth wicket fell, England needed off 3. In such a scenario, in walked Cowdrey with a plastered left-arm.

With six off two needed, David Allen defended the final two balls as the match ended in a memorable draw.


Rick McCosker

Former Australian opening batsmen Rick McCosker was struck on the jaw in a Test match against England in Melboure in 1977. A rising bouncer from Bo Willis struck McCosker on his jaw. The ball went on to hit the wicket but he was given retired hurt.

Australia were bowled out for 138 and in reply they bowled out England for only 95 in what was a riveting display of fast bowling by the Australian pacers.

In their second innings, Australia were in a dominant position of 353 for 8 when Dennis Lily was dismissed.

McCosker then walked out to bat with his jaw wrapped up and batted for 68 deliveries scoring 25 runs. Australia finally declared at 419 for nine, setting England 463 runs to win. Despite best efforts from England’s Derek Randall who scored 174, they fell short by 45 runs as Australia won a memorable Test match.

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Topics:  Graeme Smith   anil kumble   Gary Kirsten 

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