It was the 14th of October 2006, a football match between newcomers in the English Premier League Reading versus reigning champions Chelsea, barely 30 seconds into that game, Petr Cech (goal keeper of Chelsea) crashes into the speeding foot of Reading’s midfielder Stephen Hunt. What looked like a minor clash soon needed the club’s doctors, ambulance and head surgery for a fractured skull, he was out of football for 3 months!
Hunt’s leg dented Cech’s skull and pushed pieces of bone towards the brain. It was these pieces that threatened his life. One wrong move, and the fragments were in danger of lacerating or bruising the brain and damaging blood vessels. There were even reports from medical sources that Cech’s injury was consistent with that of a car crash.
Loss of speech, metal plates inserted just above his left ear, the invention of the helmet, the story goes on. But the next important date was January 20, 2007. Cech was back on the pitch against doctor’s advise to not play again till August 2007.
Imagine what was going through his mind; Replays of the accident fresh in his mind, the thought of crashing into someone again, the hesitation to go into a challenge with a player. Anyone in his shoes must have been afraid after such a life threatening accident (did I mention his replacement was knocked unconscious in that same game?).But he was resilient, dogged and determined to continue his career. He has not looked back ever since!!
Individual Awards (2007-)
- Chelsea Outstanding Achievement Award 2007
- UEFA’s most valuable goalkeeper 2007 and 2008
- International Sports Press Association Best Goalkeeper of the Year 2007
- Premier League Golden Gloves award, 2010 and 2014
- Czech Republic Footballer of the Year 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013
- FA Cup 2007, 2009, 2010 and 2012
- League Cup 2007 and 2015
- Premier League 2010 and 2015
- UEFA Champions League 2012
- UEFA Europa League 2013
Notice all these came after a major life threatening setback (and there are more!), we do not know how soon he overcame his fears, we however know he did not quit, his fear did!
I set up this blog afraid (some might say the stakes are not high or I have nothing to lose), thinking to myself, why are you so convinced you write well? what if no one reads your articles? After all, reading is a culture on a fast decline. What if people say your content lacks purpose or depth? what if it does not appeal? Matter of fact, it is possible no one ever reads this!
Some people say; what’s the worst that can happen? I prefer to say, what’s the best that can happen?! Look on the bright side, be positive minded, speak to yourself till it feels like it is some superior being speaking to you. And remember, there is no such thing as a defeat, you either win or learn.