Aussie umpire Paul Reiffel hospitalized after scary on-field incident

Paul Reiffel

Australian umpire Paul Reiffel was taken to hospital after he was hit on the back of the head by a throw during the fourth Test between India and England.

50-year-old Paul Reiffel, who played 35 Tests and 92 one-day internationals for Australia as a fast bowler, was umpiring at square leg on day one in Mumbai when English batsman Keaton Jennings hit the ball past him into the outfield.

Indian fieldsman Bhuvneshwar Kumar lobbed the ball back in but inadvertently hit Reiffel, who was looking the opposite direction to the throw.

Paul Reiffel immediately hit the deck clutching his head and was attended to by medical staff.

After a short delay he was able to walk from the field and was transported to hospital for precautionary tests.

The incident was remarkably similar to one involving fellow Aussie Adam Voges, who was struck on the back of the head by a throw from a teammate during a County game in England earlier this year.

Voges said he was groggy for about 10 days afterwards.

Paul Reiffel

The fortunate part was that the throw was just a lob but Paul Reiffel quickly fell to the ground. The other umpire Bruce Oxenford, who wears an arm guard in limited-overs cricket, rushed to provide Paul Reiffel shade with his hat. The England physio and doctor rushed out immediately, and gave him basic tests. Paul Reiffel walked conscious, and with the help of the England medical staff before it was decided that he would be taken to a nearby hospital for further tests.

Paul Reiffel was replaced on the field by South African umpire Marais Erasmus.


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