Former Zimbabwe allrounder Guy Whittall hospitalised after leopard attack

Guy Whittall was injured by a leopard in Zimbabwe Guy Whittall

Guy Whittall, the former Zimbabwe allrounder, has undergone emergency surgery in Harare after being mauled by a leopard while on a hunting expedition.

The incident, which occurred earlier this week, comes several years after Whittall survived another brush with the local wildlife, when an eight-foot crocodile was found to have been under his bed while he slept.

Whittall, who played 46 Tests and 147 ODIs for Zimbabwe between 1993 and 2003, now runs a safari business with his family in Humani, in the South East of the country, where it is understood he was tracking a leopard that had previously been wounded by a client.

His wife, Hannah Stooks-Whittall, confirmed the incident in a Facebook post, accompanied by graphic pictures of Whittall being treated in the bush after sustaining cuts to his arms and legs, as well as a 5-inch gash to his head.

A later picture showed Whittall in hospital with his head heavily bandaged, but giving a thumbs-up to the camera. He lost "a lot of blood" in the attack, Hannah added, but his injuries might have been even more severe had it not been for his "faithful K9", Chikara, who helped to wrestle the leopard off him.

"Chikara [is] coming up tomorrow to the vet after being mauled by the leopard and getting the cat off Guy!" she wrote. "Very special boy.

"Guy and I are overwhelmed by the hundreds of messages of well-wishers after Guy's run in with a wounded leopard earlier today," she added. "We are very fortunate that he was stabilized at Hippo Clinic by wonderful staff. He was then Airlifted from Buffalo Range by Ace Ambulance to Harare, then transferred to Milton Park Hospital for treatment."

Whittall's post-cricket career hit the headlines again in 2013 after he discovered an eight-foot, 165kg Nile crocodile had made its way from the nearby Turgwe river into his bedroom at the game reserve and spent the night there.

Speaking at the time, Whittall recalled how he had dangled his feet over the side of the bed before leaving the room, and had only been alerted to the intruder by the terrified screams of the housemaid.

"He really is one lucky man," Hannah told MailOnline. "First he had the crocodile and now the leopard, he really is the cat with nine lives."