Scots rugby international Joe Ansbro suffers triple neck break
SCOTLAND rugby international Joe Ansbro is facing a lengthy period out of the game after suffering a broken neck during a pre-season match at the weekend.
The centre was playing for his club side London Irish when he was carried off a minute into the second half of their 34-10 victory against Munster.
The 26-year-old is in University Hospital in Cork City and, despite fears his career could be over, the national side’s doctor expressed optimism that he could be back playing in less than four months.
It is the latest severe injury to befall a Scotland internationalist after Thom Evans suffered a life-threatening accident in a Six
Nations game two years ago. Evans retired from the game after suffering a slipped vertebra.
Serious injuries have raised questions about the game’s safety and led to changes in schools rugby.
Ansbro sustained a triple fracture of a vertebra after
attempting to claim a ball, but it is understood he has not suffered any nerve damage, and he is expected to be flown home to the UK this week.
The Glasgow-born player’s father Paul said the prospect of a serious injury was something “every parent worries about” in the sport.
He said: “He’s got a triple fracture of the C1 vertebra at the top of his spine. They’ve put a metal halo on his head that’s got to be in place 24/7 for three months.”
Mr Ansbro said there was “nothing malicious” about the injury, adding: “They did a CAT scan and an MRI scan, and they’ve had a neurosurgeon looking after him. He was really lucky, it was what they call a stable fracture and there’s no nerve damage.
“That was the thing they were most concerned about; Joe’s still got movement in his hands and feet.
The player will miss the forthcoming autumn internationals against New Zealand, South Africa and Tonga.
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