The complacent response of the media to the death of Australian batsman Phil Hughes, not least from the BBC’s Jonathan Agnew, is perhaps to be expected. “It’s all part of the game,” seems to be the most common reaction.
The felling of Hughes in Sydney by a fast, rising ball highlights the appalling design deficiencies of protective helmets.
I was there in 2002 at the WACA in Perth when England’s Alex Tudor was poleaxed by a 90mph delivery from Brett Lee. It was sickening. Poor Tudor was never the same again.
That one went through the front of the visor, whereas the Hughes blow struck him on the completely unprotected back of the head. Both injuries happen not frequently, but on a pretty regular basis.
It seems that helmet manufacturers are more concerned with turning out a product that looks cool than with real effectiveness. Perhaps the death of Hughes will prompt the cricketing authorities and those manufacturers into producing something that’s actually fit for purpose.