Australia Under-19 batsman Jake Fraser-McGurk has been forced to return home early from the U19 World Cup in South Africa as a precautionary measure after being scratched by a monkey.
According to a statement from Cricket Australia, the incident occurred when Fraser-McGurk and his team-mates were enjoying downtime at a nature reserve last week after ousting England in the group stage and sealing their own place in the quarter-final.
While the wound itself is not said to be grave, medical staff decided he should return home to Australia for precautionary treatment, given the potential diseases that can be carried by a monkey. “We want to make sure that Jake doesn’t have any ongoing medical concerns as a result of the incident so we have taken the best course of action,” said Alex Kountouris, Cricket Australia’s sports science and sports medicine manager.
— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) November 13, 2019
“This involves the player returning to Australia for the treatment required within the recommended seven days of the incident taking place. We expect Jake will be available for selection shortly after he has completed the treatment.”
While Fraser-McGurk featured in Australia’s quarter-final loss to India on January 28, where he was run out without facing a ball, he is set to miss the last two games of their Under-19 World Cup campaign (which will determine their ranking for the next World Cup). He is the team’s second-highest run-getter so far, having aggregated 118 runs from four innings at 39.33.
The youngster was contrite: “I guess it serves me right for getting too close to the animal enclosure. That’s a lesson learned. I look forward to completing the treatment and getting back on the field as soon as possible.”