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Bangladesh skipper OK after bouncer scare

Associated Press logo Associated Press 15/01/2017 Steve Zemek

Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim has been released from hospital after being struck on the head by a bouncer on the final day of the first Test against New Zealand.

Mushfiqur was taken to hospital shortly before lunch on Monday when he was struck on the back of the helmet as he tried to duck under a low bouncer from New Zealand fast bowler Tim Southee.

He knelt, then collapsed to the ground near the pitch and lay motionless for almost 20 minutes as he received treatment from paramedics and team medical staff.

There were fears Mushfiqur had suffered a serious injury but after arriving at Wellington Hospital, only about 100 meters from the Basin Reserve, he was able to get word to his teammates that he was feeling better.

Mushfiqur was able to rejoin his team after precautionary tests and in time for the end of the match, which New Zealand won by chasing down its winning target of 217 runs, thanks to an unbeaten century by captain Kane Williamson.

"I'm feeling much better. Things could have been worse," Mushfiqur said.

"Luckily I escaped. There is a bit of pain there but hopefully I'll get through."

Mushfiqur was 13 not out and had batted 80 minutes with a broken finger against a barrage of short-pitched bowling from New Zealand before he was struck by Southee.

He was unable to bat again in the innings and is in doubt for the second Test which starts at Hagley Oval in Christchurch on Friday.

Although serious injuries are uncommon in cricket, any hits to the head are treated extremely seriously.

In November 2014, former Australian Test cricketer Phillip Hughes died after he was struck on the neck by a bouncer bowled by Sean Abbott during a Sheffield Shield match between South Australia and New South Wales.

Hughes collapsed and died in hospital two days later without regaining consciousness.

An inquest into his death exonerated Abbott and the umpires but recommended the use of newer-model batting helmets which provide greater protection to a batsman's head and neck.

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