Objective To describe the incidence, prevalence, nature and severity of injury to elite New Zealand cricketers for the 2002/2003 to 2007/2008 seasons.
Design Prospective cohort.
Setting Elite cricket in New Zealand.
Participants 248 elite male cricketers.
Main outcome measures Incidence and prevalence rates.
Results The overall match injury incidence rate for the international competition (51.6 injuries per 10 000 player-hours; 95% CI 40.1 to 65.3) was almost twice that of the domestic competition (27.2; 23.5 to 31.4). The prevalence rate for the international competition (12%; 11.3% to 12.8%) was significantly higher than that for the domestic competition (9.7%; 9.4% to 10.1%). Overall, 79.5% of injuries occurred in matches and 48.7% of all injuries were sustained while bowling. The lower limb was the body region most commonly injured (43.5%), the most common specific diagnosis was hamstring strains/tears (11.1%) and the injuries contributing the highest proportion of match days lost were stress fractures to the low back (22%).
Conclusions The findings of this study support ongoing injury surveillance in New Zealand and other test cricket playing nations for the purpose of describing injury and monitoring the effect of interventions over time.
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