Currie Cup

Cheetahs wing rushed to hospital after battling to breathe

William Small-Smith (Gallo Images)
William Small-Smith (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - There was drama at Toyota Stadium on Thursday when Free State Cheetahs wing William Small-Smith was rushed to hospital after having trouble breathing during training. 

In scenes that caused understandable concern, the 27-year-old was given mouth-to-mouth resuscitation at one point. 

The Cheetahs confirmed to Sport24 on Friday morning that emergency services were contacted immediately and that Small-Smith was taken to the Bloemfontein Mediclinic. 

Fortunately, the player is now in a stable condition and is "fine and alright" after spending the night in hospital. 

Further tests are being conducted, but the Cheetahs added that doctors had informed them that the problem was not concussion or head related, but rather a breathing issue. 

Cheetahs coach Franco Smith visited Small-Smith on Thursday and he is confident that he will make a full recovery soon. 

"It was a shortness of breath and fortunately not as serious as we suspected," Smith told Netwerk24.

"Everyone was very frightened, but it was handled well by the medical staff."

According to Smith, Small-Smith could even return in time for next weekend's Currie Cup clash against the Sharks in Durban. 

Small-Smith had been included in the side to play against the Golden Lions on Friday night, but his place will now be taken by Tapiwa Mafura. 

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