In a shocking incident, Australian umpire Paul Reiffel was on Thursday hit on the head by a throw from Indian pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar on the first day of the fourth Test between India and England in Mumbai.
During the 49th over of the match, debutant Keaton Jennings played a shot towards square leg umpire Reiffel for a single. Bhuvneshwar, who was fielding at the deep picked up the ball and threw it towards wicket-keeper Parthiv Patel. But the ball did not reach him and instead hit Reiffel on his head.
After getting some first aid from English physiotherapist and doctors present on the field, Reiffel left the field and was replaced by Marais Erasmus.
Jennings went on to play and brought up his century on debut. He is the eighth English opener and 19th batsman from his country to achieve the feat.
The incidents of umpire getting injured on field during matches is not new. In January this year, umpire Richard Kettleborough was injured when a shot from Australian opener Aaron Finch hit him on his shin. The incident occurred during his 107-run knock against India in an ODI at Manuka Oval in Canberra. Kettleborough left the field after receiving first aid and was replaced by another umpire.
Nowadays, umpires do wear helmets and other shields during cricket matches. In fact, Australian umpire Bruxe Oxenford stunned everyone when he wore a protective shield during the World T20 warm-up match between Australia and West Indies at the Eden Gardens this year. The shield is meant to ward off shots which have a potential to hit the umpire’s body. The International Cricket Council (ICC) had provided helmets to all the umpires officiating in the tournament. See this.
— cricket.com.au (@CricketAus) March 13, 2016