AN excellent photograph on the back page of a recent Tenbury edition of this newspaper raised a number of questions that are especially pertinent at this time.

Taken by our photographer Andy Compton it shows batsman Richard Sinclair being bowled by Robbie Farrar in a cricket game that Tenbury won.

Call me Sherlock Holmes but the fact that wicketkeeper Dave Hunt was standing back from the stumps combined with another photograph of Farrar in action leads me to conclude that the bowler is what my colleagues in the sports department would call a ‘paceman'.

What I really find interesting is that not only is the batsman not wearing a helmet but he is wearing glasses.

Now cricket is a wonderful game but one in which a hard projectile is flung at speed in the direction of another player from a relatively short distance.

It can be dangerous, as was demonstrated in the most tragic circumstances by the death of Australian and former Worcestershire batsman Phillip Hughes, who died after being struck on the neck in a game in Sydney in November 2014.

While it is generally accepted that Phillip Hughes was the victim of a rare and freak accident, the risk is very real and I am surprised that the wearing of helmets by batsmen is not compulsory.

The wearing of helmets is compulsory in competitive cycling but not, as far as I am aware, in normal recreational road cycling. I can only assume that this is because certain cyclists – jumping red lights and riding on the pavement – do not think that rules of the roads should apply to them anyway.

At the heart of this is the philosophical debate about how much should the state intervene to protect us against ourselves.

As someone who used to play club cricket, albeit poorly, I know that if I was playing today I would wear a helmet and I would expect others to do the same.

There is a perfectly legitimate argument that adults should be allowed to take a risk with their own safety provided, of course, they do so knowingly.

However, if we accept this argument then it is hard not to argue that passengers in cars should not be compelled to wear seat belts or motorcyclists crash helmets.

Of course, it is common sense for a cricketer to wear a helmet when batting or for someone travelling in a car to put a seat belt on or for a motorbike rider to be kitted out with a crash hat.

The problem is that, in the real world, common sense is regrettably not always all that common and so rules have to be made.

It is understandable that people, including this writer, get frustrated at times when we think the health and safety culture goes too far, such as preventing children from playing conkers.

But even this has some logic, especially with children who, it might be argued, are not mature enough to be able to decide to put themselves at risk from a flying conker in the eye.

Children take their lead from their elders and so hopefully I will not see an adult batting without a helmet again.