Cricket Injuries: Insights for the ICC T20 Cricket World Cup 2024 and Beyond

Have you been following the ICC T20 Cricket World Cup? This year the tournament is being hosted by the USA and the West Indies. Team USA defeated Team Pakistan in a historic win. They also held their own against Team India, but ultimately fell short. Team USA’s Saurabh Netravalkar bowled Indian superstars Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma out, limiting them to a combined three runs. Overall, Team USA’s performance earned them a spot in the quarterfinals, referred to as the Super 8 round – for the first time in international cricket history! USA’s run in this World Cup has unfortunately ended, but we are looking forward to watching competitive cricket matches across the country as the Major League Cricket’s second season begins in July, as well as watching USA compete in the ICC T20 World Cup in 2026, for which they have qualified! Although the sport isn’t as popular in the USA, the national team’s strong performance has captured the attention of viewers all across the country! As with all sports, the physical demands inherent in cricket can often lead to injuries that require specialized care and attention. At AOSMI, we have a team of orthopedic and sports medicine experts dedicated to helping you recover from common cricket injuries so you can learn, play, and excel in this sport without worry. 


A cricket batsman playing cricket on the pitch in white jersey for test matches. The batsman hits a red ball. Batting can result in cricket injuries.

About the Author: Arth Patel, MD, MPH, is a board-certified Primary Care Sports Medicine Physician and Family Medicine specialist renowned for his compassionate care and expertise in sports medicine. Specializing in conservative, non-surgical treatments, Dr. Patel is dedicated to managing sports injuries and promoting musculoskeletal health. With a commitment to personalized patient care and a focus on non-operative solutions, he strives to keep athletes and individuals of all ages active and thriving. Trust Dr. Patel to guide you toward optimal recovery and peak physical performance.


Understanding Cricket – a Basic Guide

Cricket, a sport played on an oval field by two teams of eleven players each, involves batting, bowling, and fielding. Similar to baseball, where hitting, pitching, and fielding are pivotal, cricket sees batsmen scoring runs by hitting the ball and running between two sets of wickets, similar to bases in baseball. Each time both batsmen successfully run to the opposite wicket, they score a run. Meanwhile, bowlers aim to dismiss batsmen by hitting the stumps behind them or inducing a catch by fielders. If the bails on the stumps are dislodged by the ball, the batsman is out “bowled”. Fielders can also catch the ball after the batsman hits it, resulting in an “out” similar to catching a fly ball in baseball. 

Matches are structured in Test formats (strategic and longer games), One Day Internationals (ODIs), and the fast-paced T20 matches, which condense the action into 20 overs per team—akin to the excitement of a baseball inning but with frequent opportunities for runs and dismissals. The ICC T20 Cricket World Cup highlights this rapid format, showcasing players’ agility and strategy on a global stage.

Cricketer batsman ready to hit a shot during a match on the pitch. Cricket can result in common cricket injuries.

Common Cricket Injuries 

Cricket involves sudden movements and repetitive actions that place strain on different parts of the body. These demands predispose players to a range of common cricket injuries:

Hamstring Injuries

Hamstring strains are prevalent among cricketers, particularly fast bowlers and agile fielders who must perform sudden sprints and directional changes. These injuries involve strains or tears of the hamstring muscles and tendons, resulting in symptoms such as pain, swelling, and limited mobility. Hamstring injuries will cause pain in the back of the thigh and are difficult to manage on your own. It is critical to see your primary care sports medicine and orthopedic care team to come up with a personalized treatment plan.

Back Injuries

The lumbar spine is particularly vulnerable in cricket, primarily due to the stress placed on it during bowling actions. Bowlers often suffer from lumbar spine injuries, including muscle strains and more severe conditions like stress fractures. Symptoms can range from localized back pain to stiffness and limited mobility, affecting performance and overall well-being. Our comprehensive team of orthopedic spine care, and interventional pain management specialists are experienced in managing back pain in athletes.

Hand and Wrist Injuries

Hand and wrist injuries are frequent among cricketers, paralleling similar risks seen in baseball players. For batsmen, the impact of the ball on the hand can result in fractures or sprains, similar to getting hit by a pitch in baseball. For fielders, catching the ball places stress on the hands and wrists, increasing the risk of sprains, bone bruising, or conditions like carpal tunnel syndrome, akin to fielding ground balls or catching throws in baseball. Our team of primary care sports medicine and orthopedic specialists are skilled in treating hand and wrist injuries in athletes, ensuring you receive the personalized care needed to recover swiftly.


Cricket Bowler bowling during a match. Bowling results in different types of common cricket injuries.

Cricket Injury Prevention Tips

Preventing cricket injuries involves proper preparation and technique. Here are some tips to help you stay injury-free:

  • Warm-Up: Always warm up before playing. Dynamic stretches and light jogging can prepare your muscles for the physical demands of cricket.
  • Strength Training: Incorporate strength training exercises focusing on the core, legs, and upper body to improve stability and resilience.
  • Flexibility: Regularly perform stretching exercises to maintain flexibility, reducing the risk of muscle strains.
  • Proper Technique: Ensure you use the correct techniques for batting, bowling, and fielding. Poor technique can increase the risk of injury.
  • Rest and Recovery: Give your body time to recover between games and practice sessions. Overuse can lead to chronic injuries.


Treatment Approaches to Cricket Injuries

Managing cricket-related injuries involves a multifaceted approach that integrates primary care sports medicine and orthopedic specialties to provide tailored care for each athlete:

  • Primary Care Sports Medicine: Primary care sports medicine (PCSM) physicians specialize in non-operative orthopedics and regenerative medicine. They assess injury severity and provide personalized pain management using NSAIDs, corticosteroid injections, and advanced regenerative medicine treatments such as stem cell therapy and PRP (Platelet-Rich Plasma) injections. PCSM specialists oversee customized rehabilitation programs targeting strength, flexibility, and functional recovery tailored to cricketers’ demands. They also emphasize preventive care through education on injury prevention techniques and conditioning exercises. 
  • Orthopedics: Orthopedic physicians specialize in non-operative orthopedics, complex fracture care, and surgical interventions. Surgical procedures are tailored to stabilize fractures and repair ligament injuries, aiming to restore optimal function and strengthen long-term cricket performance.
  • Interventional Pain Management: Pain management specialists focus on spine health, interventional procedures, and medication management. These interventions alleviate pain, reduce inflammation, and promote tissue healing, facilitating a faster return to play.
  • Physical Therapy: Integral to recovery, physical therapists design customized rehabilitation programs to restore mobility, strength, and flexibility. These programs are crucial for enhancing functional movement patterns and preventing reinjury, helping cricketers return to the game with confidence and resilience.


Cheerful cricketers celebrating their victory. Cricket Injuries.

As the excitement of the ICC T20 Cricket World Cup 2024 unfolds, AOSMI recognizes cricket as a fantastic form of exercise that promotes both physical fitness and mental agility. With the growing popularity of cricket, we anticipate an increase in related injuries. Whether you’re new to the sport or a seasoned player, our team is here to provide expert care and support for any injuries you may encounter. If you experience any pain or injury from playing cricket, please schedule an appointment today so we can get you back to your strongest self!