England spinner Jack Leach has revealed he feared for his life after falling ill during the winter tour of New Zealand.
Leach, who became a firm fans’ favourite after helping England draw the Ashes last summer, played in the first Test against New Zealand before being contracting gastroenteritis.
The 28-year-old ended up hospitalised with a secondary diagnosis of sepsis – a form of blood poisoning that can prove fatal.
Reflecting on the ordeal, Leach told PA: ‘I didn’t know too much about it at the time, how serious it could be, but I remember feeling very, very ill.
‘I remember thinking, “Don’t fall asleep because you might not wake up”. It was that serious in terms of how I was feeling.
‘I was out of it, really. My blood pressure was dropping quickly, my heart-rate was 190 and my temperature was 40 degrees. That’s when they called an ambulance and got me to hospital.
‘Once I got there, got the antibiotics in my arm and on to a drip, I started to feel better quite quickly but it still took a couple of nights in hospital and I was probably still recovering when I flew back from New Zealand.
‘It took longer to get over than I thought.’
Despite his struggles in New Zealand, Leach travelled with the England squad for the subsequent tour of South Africa but was then one of a number of players to pick up a bug.
‘I picked up a couple of things out there and my body couldn’t cope with it,’ Leach added.
‘Other people got ill but I struggled to fight it off as well as a healthy person. The medication I’m on for Crohn’s weakens my immune system, so it is just a bit more of a struggle.
‘You can start to feel fine in general but playing high-level sport is a completely different thing and that’s probably something I didn’t think about enough. As sportsmen we try to push through pain.
‘You don’t want to be weak mentally or physically but unfortunately that was the situation: I was weak physically. With your health you sometimes have to take a step back.’
England’s two-Test tour of Sri Lanka starts in Galle on March 19.
Source: Read Full Article