England fast bowler Jofra Archer has revealed that when he hit Australian batting genius, Steve Smith, with a bouncer, the memories of Phillip Hughes’ death came into his mind.
During the Ashes 2019 held in England, Archer had bowled a 92 mph brutal bouncer which floored Smith followed by the latter’s concussion on the head. Smith fell on the ground and was lying there for sometime before the physio and medical team pulled him off the field.
In 2014, former Australia batsman Hughes expired after being hit by a short-pitched ball. The incident took place during a domestic match held in Sydney, Hughes got hit on the head from a ball of Sean Abbott. He immediately fell on the ground and went unconscious.
Two days later, he was declared dead by the doctors. Though Hughes was wearing a helmet, the ball struck an unprotected area just below his left ear.
England speedster Archer recalled the Ashes 2019 episode and said he thought of that unfortunate incident (Hughes’ death) when his deadly bouncer struck Smith.
“My first reaction was that it hit the helmet, but a few seconds after he went down, everyone was like ‘Oh no’,” Archer told Talksport radio.
“We had the stuff with Phil a few years ago and, generally, anything that hits you in that vicinity is going to be trouble. I’m just glad that he came out on the other side of it and batted in two games,” added Archer.
A few minutes later, Smith came to bat again, and everyone was surprised but not Archer. The 25-year-old paceman said that he had played with him in India and he knows Smith’s passion and madness for cricket.
Smith was a consistent performer for the Aussies as they retained the Ashes with a 2-2 draw last summer. Even though, he was forced to sit out of the third Test due to concussion protocol.
“I wasn’t surprised when he came back out to bat because I played with him in India and we all know he’s mad for cricket. To be honest, even if he didn’t come out then, he would’ve come out as the last batsman. The concussion wasn’t so weird because they only brought in new rules recently. I was just upset that the replacement batsman came in and batted so well!” Archer added further.
Smith had performed exceptionally well in the last Ashes. In the four matches he played, the Sydney-born batsman accumulated 774 runs at an unbelievable average of 110.57. He smashed three hundreds and as many half-centuries, including a doubleton at Old Trafford.