Louth Cricket Club have launched an appeal to help its overseas star following a road accident which killed his brother-in-law.
Xander Pitchers made a big impact with bat and ball during his debut season for Louth this summer, and had already signed up for a second season before he returned home to South Africa.
But within weeks of his return, the Namibian international was involved with other members of his family in a serious road accident on Sunday, October 1.
His brother in-law lost his life in the collision, while Xander was left in hospital with significant injuries.
While his condition is not believed not to be life threatening, the 23-year-old all-rounder required surgery on a serious ankle injury.
Louth CC spokesman Stewart West said: “Xander was a hugely popular young man while with us in Louth.
“During his stay he resided for the summer with Mark and Amanda Ryder and their family, where he was certainly made to feel like one of their own.
“Both the Ryders and all at Louth CC were very concerned to hear the news as it trickled out of South Africa this week.
“Xander had a huge impact on the club, in particular with the junior members and hundreds of schoolchildren who benefitted greatly from his coaching, enthusiasm and great humour throughout the season.”
He added: “Xander is due to return to coach and play at the club in 2018 and we hope this will still be the case.
“But right now that is the least of our concerns, as we are all hoping that he can recover well and our thoughts are with him and his family during this challenging time.”
With Xander facing big medical costs, Louth CC set out to raise £1,000 to help their club-mate via a Crowdfunding appeal, and within 24 hours, the tally stood at £890 for the popular cricketer.
The club proposes to donate any additional funds to Xander and his family as they rebuild their lives.
“Another side to the tragedy is that his sister is now left to bring up a young child on her own,” Stewart added.
“As a result, the club is supporting with donations and would like to ask anyone in the community who would like to help to please contribute.”
To donate, visit www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/xanderpitchers