OPINION: The Helmet Debate – Healy Was Lucky… If We Don’t Act, One Day Someone Won’t Be

As Cricinfo’s George Dobell reported only the other week, the ECB are considering making the wearing of helmets compulsory for batsmen and close fielders playing in (men’s) county cricket.

It is unstated whether this would also apply to women’s county cricket and the new Super League, though one would hope and assume so; but we need to ask if it might not be better for the ICC to step in and legislate globally?

The recent injury to Southern Stars and New South Wales Breakers glove-butler Alyssa Healy shows why.

The above tweet from Cricket Australia makes light of her injury, as did the player herself in subsequent posts on social media; but the fact is that she was hit hard enough for the ball to bounce several yards in the opposite direction – the kind of blow that could so easily have resulted in a career-ending, or even life-threatening, injury.

Of course, helmets are hot, uncomfortable and restrictive. Unsurprisingly, no one likes wearing one. But this is exactly why the ICC needs to legislate, to create a level and safe playing-field for everyone.

Because the truth is that Healy was extremely lucky to get away with “just” a very nasty bruise. So let’s take some responsibility now as a game, before the next player to be hit isn’t quite so fortunate.

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2 thoughts on “OPINION: The Helmet Debate – Healy Was Lucky… If We Don’t Act, One Day Someone Won’t Be

  1. In this country helmets are mandatory up until 19 and by then the wearing of one is ingrained into the player as just part of their equipment. It does not make a player invincible however maybe these incidents make that clearer but there can still be education. Maybe the impending Anniversary of Phil Hughes sad passing is one such opportunity.

    For us older club players its a consideration especially when glasses become necessary and reactions slow.

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  2. … and what about spectators. Should there be nets around the ground to prevent a 6 hitting a spectator ?
    … and how does a helmet stop a bail getting through to the eye ?
    … and what about 1st slip getting it in the face after the keeper deflects a ball they would have caught were it not for having their vision restricted by a helmet ?

    If, say, Sarah Taylor is brave enough (and she definitely is not stupid) to keep without a helmet then that should be her right, no matter how much it makes my stomach churn to think what injury she might incur.

    Perhaps the previous Comment sows the seed for the real solution whereby a helmet is mandatory for players born after a certain date.

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