Dennis Amiss was the man mainly responsible for popularizing the use of the helmet in first-class cricket in 1978. Dennis Amiss had been vulnerable against pace and the short-pitched ball for several seasons beforehand and when he signed for World Series Cricket he realized that he would need protective headgear to combat the buffeting he knew he would receive from Dennis Lillee, Jeff Thomson, and all the others. Many old-timers scoffed at him, but a few modern cricketers who played the game for a living were convinced that a fatality was not far away. I was one of them; in fact, I had advocated headgear for some time.
Anyway, Dennis Amiss started off with the two crash helmet designs, moved on to the one with the grille, and then in 1979 he marketed the two he’s holding. They are light, reasonably comfortable, and — whatever the purists say — they are here to stay. It is because the seventies was the decade of speed that the helmets were needed. But the helmet has led to abuse by close-in fielders; I do not see why they should be allowed to wear one, because it allows them to get even nearer to the batsman and so gives them an unfair advantage.
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