Concussion substitute decision must be left to umpire and physio, not batsman, says Harsha Bhogle
Prominent commentator and cricket analyst Harsha Bhogle has voiced his opinion on whether a concussion substitute should be used must be left to the umpire and team physio and not the batsman himself. Bangladesh was forced to use two substitutes during the second Test against India in Kolkata.
Ever since the concept of a like-for-like concussion substitute was introduced for batsmen who were hit on the helmet or the head, a total of five substitutes has been used. Four of those have been caused by the increasingly impressive Indian fast bowling unit. Perhaps more important is the fact that three of those five — including Liton Das and Nayeem Hasan in the recently-concluded pink Test — carried on batting for a while.
“You’d have noticed that as soon as the ball hit the batsman on the head, the umpire straightaway came and had a look and insisted that the physio come along. The physio then has to put the batsman through a test to see if he is sounding normal and then speak to the umpire and decide whether the batsman plays on or not. It is not the batsman’s decision,” Bhogle said in a Cricbuzz video.
“Why do we ask the batsman to go away? Because it is inbuilt in a competitive athlete to ride adversity. There was a fear that batsmen would say they’re fine and can play on. When you get hit, the first sign people look for is excess adrenaline and feeling fine for a while. See, Liton Das hit two boundaries afterwards, Nayeem batted on. The symptoms started showing up a lot later. It’s different to when you hit anywhere else, but if you get hit on the head, nobody’s taking a chance. It can be life-threatening,” Bhogle added.