A blind cricket commentator in Zimbabwe manages to judge the power and direction of a shot – and rarely makes mistakes.
When the ball hits the bat, the radio announcer exclaims that it’s sailing far. Dean Du Plessis’ acute sense of hearing and his eavesdropping on other commentators helps him overcome the fact that he is blind, producing a delivery so polished that most listeners are unaware that he can’t see.
Mr Du Plessis hears the power and direction of the hit. He listens to the speed and spin of the ball, along with the players’ exertions and their cries of elation or frustration. He senses the excitement – or otherwise – of the play on the cricket field and collates the scores with a computer-like memory.
In the media area at Harare’s Country Club sports field, other journalists see the ball soar skyward after a sharp crack on the bat.
“That’s a big one. It’s gone for six,” said the 39-year-old Mr Du Plessis, his opaque eyes gazing into the distance.
It has, flying way out of the field.
Team members and spectators murmur applause as the often sedate game of cricket goes on. In a fast-moving sport like football, Mr De Plessis’ feat would likely be impossible. He asks a friend to confirm the score on the board and feeds the latest to state radio.
“I have to ensure I am totally accurate,” he told The Associated Press. “I’m generally spot on or very close. I think I have a pretty big hard drive in my head.”-Telegraph