New Zealand pacer Lea Tahuhu overcomes cancer scare

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19 Aug 2021 | 12:54 PM
authorcricket.com staff

New Zealand pacer Lea Tahuhu overcomes cancer scare

White Ferns' pacer Lea Tahuhu recovered from three surgeries to her foot to remove a mole in its pre-cancerous state

New Zealand pacer Lea Tahuhu spoke about her recovery from three foot surgeries to remove a potentially dangerous mole in order to make it to the squad that is currently touring England.

After discovering that the mole on her left foot was in pre-cancerous state, Tahuhu underwent surgeries and a skin graft, about which she touched upon in an Instagram post in July. 

"It got me to some low places. It was such a shock, all of it," she told Newsroom on Thursday.

"It [the mole] had been there for 18 months. It looked fine to start with and then it started growing slightly bigger and changed colour," Tahuhu said. "I had the mole taken off, and all went well at that point. There's not a lot of skin on the top of your foot that you can actually pull together, so it was left a bit open."

After further tests, Tahuhu and her wife and team-mate Amy Satterthwaite learned that the wound could be more serious than expected. 

"That morning then changed drastically, because it's not often you get words such as 'melanoma' and 'skin cancer' thrown at you, that you certainly weren't expecting," Tahuhu said. "I sat there like a stunned mullet."

"What was supposed to be one local surgery and two weeks recovery, ended up being three surgeries and eight weeks later," she said.

Throughout her time at hospital, Tahuhu used the upcoming England tour to motivate herself. 

"There were a few days where I thought, 'How am I going to put ten times my body weight through my foot when I bowl? When at the moment I've just got a hole on the side of it.' But then I thought, 'No, I'm determined to get on that plane', and I'm pretty diligent with what I have to get done to reach goals."

Tahuhu, who is currently with the New Zealand squad in Derby, said that she is carefully working on getting back to full fitness. 

The White Ferns, who are without star all-rounder Amelia Kerr, will play begin their tour with three T20Is from September 1-9 followed by five ODIs from September 16-26.

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New Zealand Women tour of England, 2021New ZealandLea TahuhuAmy Satterthwaite

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