Former Australia opener fractured his spine near the base of his neck
Test great Matthew Hayden said Monday he had "dodged a bullet" after suffering head and neck injuries, including a spine fracture, while surfing during a holiday in Queensland.
Hayden — a top-order batsman who was last year inducted into the Australian Cricket Hall of Fame — fractured his spine near the base of his neck, tore several ligaments and hurt his forehead after being dumped into a sandbank while surfing with his son Josh off North Stradbroke Island on Friday.
"Fractured C6, torn C5, C4 ligaments safe to say I truly have dodged a bullet," Hayden wrote in an Instagram post beside a photo of his battered face. "Thank you everyone. On the road to recovery."
The 46-year-old — who retired from international cricket in 2009 after a 103-Test career — told Brisbane's Courier Mail he was "bloody lucky" to escape serious injury.
"It was an hour into the session and we had had half dozen waves together and I got this one right handed wave which I sort of ducked under and that is pretty much all I can remember," he told the newspaper Monday.