In a bizarre incident, which was comical for some but could have resulted in a serious injury to South Africa fast bowler Anrich Nortje, the speedster was knocked over by a spider cam that was flying too low and at a rapid pace on Day 2 of the ongoing Boxing Day Test against Australia at the MCG.
Cricket Australia’s host-television broadcaster Fox Sports has issued an apology to Anrich Nortje and the South Africa team after the fast bowler was hit on his left shoulder and elbow by a spider cam.
A video of this incident/accident was even shown by the broadcaster live on Day 2.
In the second session of Day 2, on Tuesday, during the change of one of the overs, Nortje was walking toward his fielding position in the outfield when from behind, a racing spider cam hit him hard on his shoulder and elbow.
Nortje went down on the ground straight away, with all the other players and the umpires staring at him with confusion and puzzlement. Thankfully, he got up back on his feet in a few seconds’ time. Later on, he fielded and also bowled with full intensity.
— Werner (@Werries_) December 27, 2022
CA confirmed that Fox Sports had admitted it was an error by the operator. The spider camera was not used for the rest of the day after this incident, but would be in operation on day 3 with some extra safety measures in place to ensure such an incident doesn’t happen again.
Anrich Nortje trolls Spider camera on Twitter
Following the day’s play, Anrich Nortje took to Twitter to troll the spider-cam with a 3-worded tweet: “Itsy Bitsy Spider”
Itsy Bitsy Spider…
— Anrich Nortje (@AnrichNortje02) December 27, 2022
Speaking to the broadcaster, Nortje said that the spider cam shouldn’t be flying at such low level, citing that even Marco Jansen is tall.
“I didn’t know what hit me, to be honest,” Nortje said. “So far so good. It just knocked the [left] shoulder and the [left] elbow. The elbow is a bit sore but otherwise seems to be okay. I’ll just monitor it and see how it goes with the [doctor].
“I saw cables and then I turned around or moved my head and then I saw the camera, but I was a little bit too late. It was quite quick. It didn’t really change my mindset or anything. I tried to stay focused.
“I think the one thing we’ve spoken about earlier is how low it is and it probably shouldn’t be unless [it needs to be] for certain interviews or something. But I don’t think it should be travelling head height. That’s just my opinion. And then for Marco [Jansen] as well, they must take him into consideration [for his height].”