A FREAK injury on the field suffered last month that very nearly could have had tragic consequences hasn't diminished Jakk Trenfield's love of cricket.
By his own admission Axe Creek opening bowler Trenfield is obsessed by cricket.
And that was never more evident than just a week after having his adam's apple dislodged and spending three days in the Bendigo Hospital, including in the intensive care unit, Trenfield was back playing for the Cowboys in the Emu Valley Cricket Association.
Trenfield suffered the sickening injury playing for the Cowboys in their division one match against West Bendigo at Ken Wust Oval on January 22.
Bowling to West Bendigo opening batsman Travis O'Connell - who went on to make a century - Trenfield was struck in the throat when a straight drive came thundering back at him.
"It was 10 minutes or so into the game. I bowled my first over and then two balls into my second over Trav absolutely creamed his shot and I didn't have a chance to move my hands up," Trenfield said on Thursday.
"It hit me smack bang in the adam's apple and dislodged it; I was choking for a few minutes until the ambulance arrived... fortunately, we were playing in Bendigo and not out at Axe Creek.
"The pain was really bad. As soon as I got hit I couldn't breathe, I couldn't talk; I was trying to tell people that it was my adam's apple, but no-one could understand me.
"I was dry-retching and every time I dry retched I did more damage and when I bent over and the blood finally came out, that's when the ambulance was called."
Trenfield spent three days - including a day-and-a-half in the intensive care unit - in Bendigo Hospital after having his adam's apple repositioned, and while he's back playing cricket, the effects of the injury are still being felt.
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"For a couple of days there it just felt like glass in my throat and even now a couple of weeks on swallowing is still very hard," Trenfield said.
And even just talking is also providing its difficulties for Trenfield, who described his voice in the early days after the injury as that of an "80-year-old smoker".
Trenfield has been told it will take about three months for his voice to return to normal.
"When I'm talking low it's not too bad, but whenever there's any background noise it's rather hard to have to raise my voice," Trenfield said.
"There's still massive bruising on the inside of my throat and the doctor said that if it had been another 3mm in terms of where I got hit it could have been all over.
The doctor said that if it had been another 3mm in terms of where I got hit it could have been all over- Jakk Trenfield
"I can still only eat soft foods, but my recovery is coming along. My voice is getting better after it had been sounding like an 80-year-old smoker.
"It was just one of those things that happened; I've spoken to a lot of cricketers and they have never heard of this type of injury of being hit in the adam's apple happening before."
Since the injury the biggest adjustment Trenfield has had to make on field is bowling shorter spells.
"It has just been the breathing... instead of bowling a five-over spell, it has now been two overs and then I'm puffed," said Trenfield, who has taken nine wickets this season.
"My breathing and endurance has dropped a lot since it happened, but you can't take me away from the game.
"I'm obsessed with cricket; I'm a bowler, but I've got 30-odd bats.
"What happened hasn't changed the way I bowl; I'm still just as aggressive.
"Even on my way to the hospital I asked the ambo if there was any chance I could come back and bat later that day and he said, 'sorry mate, but that's a no'.
"I was watching the scores on MyCricket on the way to hospital and we were getting pumped (West Bendigo won by 85 runs), so that disappointed me."
Axe Creek plays Spring Gully this Saturday.
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