Boy, 8, critically injured during rugby game

2011-05-05 19:03

Cape Town - An 8-year-old boy is in a critical condition in the Netcare Unitas Hospital in Pretoria after he was injured while playing rugby at his primary school in Pretoria North on Thursday, paramedics said.

The events leading up to the injury remain unclear, but it is thought that the boy was injured when he attempted to tackle another player, Netcare911 spokesperson Jeffrey Wicks said.

Paramedics arrived at the scene to find the semi conscious child on the field. He had sustained serious spinal trauma as well as a significant head injury.

The boy was airlifted to the Netcare Unitas Hospital for specialist treatment.

Meanwhile, in another incident in Sinoville, Pretoria, a 10-year-old schoolboy was seriously injured when a scrum collapsed during a rugby game.

Netcare911 paramedics rushed from the first incident to the second child and also found him lying on the field, Wicks said.

The boy had sustained head and spinal trauma and was transported by ambulance to the same hospital for further care.

  • 300katoom - 2011-05-05 19:15

    Hope they makes a speedy recovery - 2011-05-05 19:52

      I too hope they make a full recovery. Its awful. I often see these young boys playing their rugby, with such passion and gusto. I have an 11yr old son and the rugby teacher is constantly saying to him to join practice, play rugby etc [because he is a solid, strong boy] but, call me a paranoid Mother, I dont let him. I would be a nervous wreck each time he would have to play a game. Again, I do hope all will be well with them.

  • 300katoom - 2011-05-05 19:19

    Hope they have a speedy recovery

  • Francis - 2011-05-05 19:44

    I hope these boys will be okay and have a speedy recovery. My prayers are with them and their parents

  • Sadie - 2011-05-05 20:02

    lets hope they have the correct coaches who actually know what they are doing. these injuries can be avoided.

      AloninSA - 2011-05-05 22:39

      HERE!!!! HERE!!!! I'll bet most of the coaches tell the kids to go give it their moere best instead of teaching them the technique of making tackles and what to do in order to avoid such things!

  • FREDDT - 2011-05-05 20:33

    Hope these boys have a speedy recovery. Perhaps the coaching style could is to blame for this.

  • Wow! - 2011-05-05 20:43

    I feel desperately sorry for this family. It is however a case of you cannot totally eliminate risk in life - it would not be worth living if you could. My thoughts are with you

  • Bertha - 2011-05-05 21:02

    I hope the coaches of both boys are Boksmart trained. It is now a legal requirement by SARU that all coaches and referees are trained in this safety workshop that teaches best practice with all attention being on the reduction of serious and/or catastrophic injuries. All parents should ask thier childrens coaches if they hold their Boksmart license to coach, if they dont have their license then do not send your child to that coach and insist that thier school/club have all of their coaches and referees Boksmart trained in order to stem the tye of horrific injuries that these two little boys have suffered. Check out for details of legislation and additional resource material.

      AloninSA - 2011-05-05 22:45

      Brilliant! Share this people!

      Cecile Kiley - 2011-05-25 21:59

      I hope the headmasters also get Boksmart trained. I've seen many a principal backing 'rugby bullies' because they're 'first team' material, rather than sorting out the ugliness on the field ... they keep them on becuase they know they'll be 'good for the team' ... a typical scenario in rugby-focus schools

  • kaMazibuko - 2011-05-05 21:47

    Nice @Bertha, let's talk solutions and avoid tragic accidents like these ever happening again

  • billy.teeton - 2011-05-05 22:06

    So much for Boksmart even though it is a good attempt to make the game safer!

      Podgette - 2011-05-06 09:15

      Were both these coaches boksmart accredited?

  • Friktasties - 2011-05-05 23:12

    Ek hoop die twee kinders herstel 100%, dit is n skok vir a ouer as sulke dinge gebeur met hul kinders maar geensins die ouers se skuld nie. Sport is goed vir die opvoeding van kinders, dit is net jammer dat daar a bietjie gevaar gepaart stap saam met dit. Soos meeste, my gebede is met julle, ouers end kinders

  • MOTHER - 2011-05-06 07:29

    I'm a mother of a 7 year old boy and believe it or not I coach them as well. The coaches needs to go and do the Boksmart course before even thinking of coaching. Believe me I'm just as scared that the boys get hurt but with the Boksmart you actually learn a lot about techniques. The other problem we have is that the parents are much more winning orientated. The kids play rugby for the fun of it and that’s what its suppose to be for them. I had to send parents off the field because of comments like "If you don’t tackle him harder you'll get a hiding". Rugby is a game where coaches and parents needs to work together - IT'S NOT ABOUT WHOS THE BEST TACKLER OR TRY SCORER BUT ABOUT HAVING FUN ESPECIALY AT A YOUNG AGE.

      marilisvr - 2011-05-06 07:49

      I fully agree with MOTHER!!! My 8 year old's neck was also seriously injured 3 weeks ago. After 8 days in traction, he was discharged and is still wearing a neck brace. The coaches didn't even realise that he got injured!!! He kept on playing till the end of practice!!! There is a HUGE problem with our coaches at this level!!!

  • Risch - 2011-05-06 08:15

    I believe they are making the sport way too serious for these young boys. They should still be enjoying playing, it shouldn't be about winning at all when they're that young. My son (7) also plays rugby, and I see the seriousness of the coaches. It is quite unsettling.

  • izaanb - 2011-05-06 08:31

    And that is why my son is now allowed to play rugby.

      Podgette - 2011-05-06 09:20

      What sport does he play? Have you heard about the 13yr old in the Cape who was hit in the chest with a cricket ball which caused his rib to pierce his lung - he sadly died. No activity in life is risk free. Your child has a better chance of being seriously injured in a car on the way to school than playing sport. My son plays rugby, and yes, everytime he is on the field, my heart is in my mouth; but would I rather have him veging on the couch unhappy or running in the fresh air happy? Tough choice.

  • KatAfrica - 2011-05-06 08:32

    Back in the day they didn't allow Primary school kids to play rugby. They could only start in High School.

  • Friedel Hamm - 2011-05-06 08:51

    I have coach children of all ages locally and abroad and feel that contact rugby should only be played from the age of 13 years and up alot more should be done to train our children in the skills and technique of the came and to strengthen them physically. Alot of parents and coaches are ignorant of the dangers and are ill equipt to coach children the correct techniques so children are not at risk.A tag rugby sistem for children will be far more valuable.The new format of the came makes it far more dangerous for children to play.

  • Warren Pridgeon - 2011-05-06 09:39

    Sadly rugby, at school level, is becoming more and more about hurting each other instead of playing the game.

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