A young South African bowler is fighting for his life after facing a brutal assault in England on Saturday (May 28) night. Mondli Khumalo, the former under-19 Proteas star, was hospitalised following an attack on him outside a pub in Friarn Street in Bridgwater.

As per media reports, Khumalo is in an induced coma as he has suffered bleeding on the brain and has had two operations thus far. He remains in serious condition. Notably, Police have arrested a 27-year-old on suspicion of causing serious bodily harm to the pacer.

The Durban-born speedster is on his first overseas stint as a professional for North Petherton Cricket Club. The team was out celebrating a victory last weekend when the whole incident occurred. He is the club’s leading bowler this season, with 15 wickets to his name at an average of 14.93. The 20-year-old has also scored 191 runs – that included two half-centuries – in seven innings.

Khumalo’s and North Petherton Cricket Club’s agent, Rob Humphries, have started work on assisting the bowlers’ family, especially on bringing Khumalo’s mother to the United Kingdom.

“Mondli is such a gentle guy. His mom just can’t understand how something like this could have happened to him,” said Humphries, as quoted by ESPNcricinfo.

“And everyone at North Petherton just adores him. He is a genuinely lovely kid. He was having a really good time here. He had bowled really well, and he had become such a wonderful part of the club,” he added.

Further, the club also issued an official statement on the whole development which stated: “All at North Petherton Cricket Club are in shock at the incident in Bridgwater that has led to our much-loved overseas player Mondli Khumalo being hospitalised in Southmead Hospital in Bristol this morning.”

“We extend our heartfelt support to Mondli for a full and speedy recovery. Our hearts go out to his family, friends and colleagues in South Africa.Our thanks to those that helped Mondli, especially the health service staff on scene and at hospital,” the statement added.