Former Black Caps coach forced to have leg amputated

Author
NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Thu, 11 Jun 2020, 2:43PM
Andy Moles. Photo / Photosport
Andy Moles. Photo / Photosport

Former Black Caps coach forced to have leg amputated

Author
NZ Herald,
Publish Date
Thu, 11 Jun 2020, 2:43PM

Former Black Caps coach Andy Moles has revealed that he had part of his leg amputated after his foot became infected.

The 59-year-old had to undergo emergency surgery to amputate his left leg below the knee after a specialist warned he could get septicaemia if left alone.

Moles, who is now Afghanistan's director of cricket, told the Daily Mail it all began with a 5km walk in 47 degree heat in Abu Dhabi last year as the Afghans prepared for a trip to Bangladesh.

The walk ended up taking the skin off the sole of his left foot, which became infected, leading to a five month healing process.

As he starting to think it was healed, the infection returned during Afghanistan's trip to India to take on Ireland, forcing him to fly back to South Africa for treatment.

Moles had his toe amputated first, but he would later contract a 'super bug' resistant to antibiotics and the infection "kept chewing away the flesh on my foot".

Eventually he decided to go through with the surgery in April in Cape Town.

"Then on April 4, I remember it vividly, a specialist came to me and said, 'You've been fighting this for 10 days. If we don't take drastic action, it could spread up the leg, and you could even get septicaemia'," Moles told the Daily Mail.

"I had about half an hour of feeling sorry for myself, and a wobble of the bottom lip. But I was in hospital around the time the Covid lockdown in South Africa started, and one or two bodies were already being wheeled out.

"The reality is I would only be missing a lower left limb. Is it going to stop me walking? No. Will it stop me coaching? No.

"I just have to learn how to be mobile. I'm a very positive person."

He is currently using "half a mechanical leg" but will soon use an $18,000 carbon-fibre prosthetic thanks to financial support from the Professional Cricketers' Trust.

Moles' former Warwickshire teammate Tim Munton recently shared a photo of him smiling: "Andy Moles absolutely shines out in these difficult times. He had to face up to losing his lower leg just 10wks ago. This pic brings a tear to my eye. Talk about taking the positive out of a tough situation."

Moles plans to walk 10km for charity over the next month with the help of a frame.

Moles had a storied English county career with Warwickshire, scoring 15,000 runs and 29 centuries.

He then coached the Northern Districts before succeeding John Bracewell as Black Caps coach in 2008.

Moles only last 11 months with the Black Caps after a player revolt made his job "untenable".