SK Flashback: Bruce Reid, a potential Australian legend, if not for his injuries
Injuries halted a promising career
One of his test-mates had famously said, “He never played two Tests in a row”. While this was an exaggeration, the fact remains that Reid’s body was unable to cope with the strains of fast bowling.
The popular view was that he was too fragile for his craft. After one of his many injuries, two discs from his back were removed and a metal plate was inserted.
One of the reasons given for his career full of injuries is that he was used as a stock bowler much before his frame was ready for this arduous task. He is at number three in the list of most balls delivered by Australian fast bowlers under the age of 23 since 1970 (behind Craig McDermott and Dennis Lillee).
Number of deliveries bowled
Number of Overs bowled
This is supported by data collected on the formative years of fast bowling by Cricket Australia. As per that data, bowlers are likely to face a range of injury problems until their bodies mature fully.