New laws for safety of wicket-keepers
The Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) has positively responded to the use of tethered bails in a view to protect wicket-keepers from injuries due to bouncing bails. While the work, on the mechanisms that tether the bails to the stumps, is still in progress; we chronicle the injuries that have happened in the past due to flying bails.
Paul Downton was one of the first players to be hit by flying bails. In 1990, while keeping wickets for his county club, the Englishman was hit by bails after the ball had struck the stumps.
Yorked behind the stumps
Former Indian wicket-keeper Saba Karim was hit in the eye off a delivery from Anil Kumble in the Asia Cup in 2000. Even after a surgery and several treatments, he had to give up his career only after playing one test and 34 ODI matches. He was treated for glaucoma. While the normal vision is 6/6, he was left with a vision of 6/18.
An injury which costed him his career
Former South Africa wicket-keeper Mark Boucher's career was cut short after he was hit by ricocheting bails in July 2012. The bail cut off his left eye ball leading to loss of the lens, iris and pupil and left him with an irreparable vision loss and photophobia. He announced his retirement from international cricket the same week after 14-years of international career.
In June 2016, former Indian captain MS Dhoni was also hit by bails while keeping wickets against Zimbabwe. While the injury was not severe and he continued keeping wickets, it again raised the question about safety of wicket-keepers.