ACT News

The price of glory: Cricket fan taken to hospital after Big Bash catch

An unorthodox catching style and a desire to overcome the social pain inflicted by a teenage ball-hog has left one cricket fan in hospital with a broken finger, with his friend requiring medical assistance after fainting.

When Tom Zouch, 29, was standing underneath a high ball at the Big Bash League grand-final at Manuka Oval on Wednesday night, his mind was transfixed with the humiliation and injustice of dropping a catch at the same ground last year.

"During the one-day game with Australia and South Africa, I was underneath a six and then this kid just got in front of me and stole the catch," he said.

"I was certain that was my once in a lifetime opportunity gone.

"All my mates have been giving me shit since that day so when that six went up last night I knew I needed to redeem myself and got a bit desperate."

The ball was hit during the half-time entertainment break, but that didn't stop Mr Zouch using his elbows to push aside fans to catch the ball.

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"I probably knocked over a few people because of my selfish pursuit and there's no doubt I reached over the guy in front of me to take the catch," he said.

Mr Zouch was wearing a KFC bucket hat, a requirement to win an entertainment system if you catch a six during the game, but in the half time show he won nothing but the ball signed by Jonathan Wells - which he nearly threw back onto the ground.

But his success came at a cost, as surgeons must now stitch his finger together to conceal an exposed bone.

"After the catch I started bleeding a little bit and I showed it to another mate, who fainted on the spot and had to be treated by St John's Ambulance paramedics," he said.

"I went down to the paramedics and they pulled out the nail and were going to stitch it up, but they realised the bone was exposed so they sent me off to hospital.

"When I got there, they told me my finger was fractured and I had to come in the next day to see a plastic surgeon as they needed a specialist to fix my finger."

Mr Zouch said he didn't feel any pain at the time given his excitement at taking the catch, with people jumping around him to celebrate.

His girlfriend, Emma Hampton, said she didn't feel sorry for her partner, who initially refused to be treated by paramedics.

"I saw the ball coming down early so backed away and created space for him. He was pretty keen to make it happen," she said.

"They eventually put him on a drip with antibiotics and recommended we didn't stay to watch the game, but of course he wanted to stay for Brett Lee's last overs"

"He went back with a cannula in his arm and his arm in a sling to watch the end of the game."

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