Sports injuries - cricket

Last revised by Rohit Sharma on 17 Jan 2022

Cricket is a popular game in Commonwealth countries. Sports injuries in this game can be associated with three positional aspects of the game: bowling, batting or fielding. Radiologists should know the different kinds of injuries related to this game for a better clinical association. Injuries can range from a musculotendinous sprain to fractures, depending on the severity of the mechanism.


Hamstring strain is cited as the most common injury associated with professional-level cricket, with a particular spike in incidence during seasons of increased 'short form' games; due to the relatively more fast-paced nature of the game compared to that of test cricket.

Risk factors

Risk factors include 3:

  • specialty position
    • fast bowlers have a 20.6% injury rate compared to 12.5% for the average player
  • the length of the game
    • 50-over games have the highest rate of player injury



Batting mainly involves flexor, and pronator teres muscles, and thus sprains are usually common in these muscles. However, 'pull' or 'overhead' shots often seen in a shorter, more aggressive game (e.g. One-Day Internationals) can cause rotator cuff or labral injuries. 'Crossed bat cut' or 'pull shots' can cause more stress to the pronator teres 2. Another common mechanism of injury is via being struck directly by the ball.

Bowling is most commonly implicated in cricket-associated injuries. The spectrum of injury ranges from the hamstring, groin to back/spine injuries. Fast bowlers also suffer from rotator cuff injuries due to the overhead bowling action.

Fielding can be associated with musculotendinous sprains, ligament tears to fractures depending on the level of impact.


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