n the fourth ODI at Centurion Park, South Africa delivered a spectacular batting performance in the final 20 overs of their innings, setting Australia an imposing target of 417 runs. Australia’s aspirations heavily relied on their in-form top-order batsmen, notably David Warner and Travis Head, known for their game-changing explosive abilities.
Unfortunately, fate took an unexpected turn when Warner departed early for just 12 runs, and Head faced an unfortunate incident in the seventh over that could have significant consequences for the left-handed batsman in the near future.
Head found himself facing the right-arm quick, Gerald Coetzee, who fired a short delivery angling down the leg side. Head attempted a pull shot, but the ball skidded low, causing him to mistime the shot, resulting in the Kookaburra smashing into his left glove at a blistering speed of 135 kph.
Immediately, the 29-year-old displayed signs of discomfort, prompting medical personnel to rush onto the field to attend to his injured fingers. Initially, the injury did not seem severe, as Head decided to soldier on and even managed to strike Rabada for a six just two balls later. Following the maximum, he collected a single and resumed his position at the start of the next over, where an unexpected twist occurred.
Coetzee unleashed another half-tracker aimed at Head’s hips, but the batsman backed away in an attempt to create some space. To everyone’s surprise, Head, barely allowing the ball to reach the wicket-keeper, sprinted down the pitch while clutching his hand, which appeared entirely limp.
He did not permit the physiotherapists to provide proper treatment before hastily retreating alongside them to the pavilion. Evidently, Head was enduring immense pain, almost breaking into a jog. Commentators speculated that Head might have suffered a fractured hand, which could result in an extended period on the sidelines.
Travis Head’s hit on the hand is a metacarpal fracture in all likelihood. If undisplaced fracture, can heal well in cast in ~4 weeks. But if displaced and angulated, may warrant surgery and put a question mark on his World Cup#RSAvsAUS #TravisHead pic.twitter.com/Qna3TaLqtc— Sports Injury Explained (@InjuryExplained) September 15, 2023
With his consistent performances in recent years, Head had solidified his position as the opener in the Australian ODI team, making him a surefire inclusion in the side’s strongest XI for the upcoming World Cup in India, which is less than 20 days away. However, his status now hangs in the balance, pending further updates following medical scans.