n South African Journal of Sports Medicine - Cricket injuries - a longitudinal study of the nature of injuries to South African cricketers : original research article

Volume 17, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1015-5163
  • E-ISSN: 2078-516X



<I>Objective.</I> To determine the incidence and nature of injuries sustained by elite cricketers during a 6-season period (1998 - 2004). <br><I>Design.</I> Physiotherapists and doctors working with the provincial and national teams completed a questionnaire for each cricketer who presented with an injury in order to determine: (i) anatomical site of injury; (ii) month of injury during the season; (iii) the diagnosis; (iv) mechanism of injury; (v) whether it was a recurrence of an injury sustained in a previous season; (vi) whether the injury had recurred again during that season; and (vii) biographical data. <br><I>Results.</I> The 1 606 injuries occurred primarily during firstclass matches (32%), limited-overs matches (26%) and practices (27%) during the early part of the season. The lower limbs (49%), upper limbs (23%) and back and trunk (23%) were most commonly injured. Acute injuries made up 66% of the injuries, while chronic and acute-on-chronic made up 12% and 22%, respectively. Soft-tissue injuries were predominantly muscle injuries (41%). Bowling (40%) and fielding (33%) accounted for the majority of the injuries, while the primary mechanism of injury was the fast bowler's delivery and follow through (25%) and running, diving, catching and throwing the ball when fielding (23%). <br><i>Conclusion.</I> The results indicate a pattern of cause of injury which coaches and medical support staff need to be aware of for long-term injury prevention. Fast bowlers are at the greatest risk of injury, while all cricketers are at risk of sustaining acute soft-tissue injuries to the lower limb, as well as role-specific injuries.

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