Helmets have made batsmen feel too safe, says Geoff Boycott

 Helmets have given a false sense of security to batsmen, who no longer have the necessary technique to deal with fast bowling, according to former England opener Geoff Boycott.

Reuters| Last Updated: Nov 27, 2014, 19:48 PM IST
Helmets have made batsmen feel too safe, says Geoff Boycott

London: Helmets have given a false sense of security to batsmen, who no longer have the necessary technique to deal with fast bowling, according to former England opener Geoff Boycott.

The death of Australian Phillip Hughes on Thursday after being struck on the head by a short-pitched delivery has fuelled debate about safety in cricket.

"Most of my career I batted on uncovered pitches without a helmet," Boycott wrote in the Daily Telegraph.

"This taught me how important it was to have a good technique against fast bowling.

"You required judgement of what to leave, when to duck and when to play the ball."

Boycott believes batsmen now feel impregnable at the crease, rather than playing with a genuine fear factor as used to be the case.

"Helmets have unfortunately taken away a lot of that fear and have given every batsmen a false sense of security," he said.

"Even tail-enders come in and bat like millionaires, flailing away and having a go at short balls with poor technique and lack of footwork.

"Helmets have made batsmen feel safe in the belief that they cannot be hurt and made batsmen more carefree and careless."

Boycott believes that injuries are inevitable, whatever improvements are made in the standard of helmets and safety equipment.

"There are no guarantees," he said. "Unless we batsmen wear a suit of armour there are always going to be injuries in cricket."