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'Nobody was taking any chances' - Medics praised after Tipp player airlifted to hospital

Nicole Walsh suffered the injury in the late stages of an All-Ireland championship game against Waterford.

Tipperary's Nicole Walsh is recovering at home after being discharged from hospital [file photo].
Tipperary's Nicole Walsh is recovering at home after being discharged from hospital [file photo].
Image: Ken Sutton/INPHO

THE MEDICS WHO tended to a Tipperary camogie player after suffering a concussion have received huge praise, with county chairperson Bridget Bourke saying “nobody was taking any chances.”

Nicole Walsh was airlifted to hospital on Saturday after a heavy collision with an opponent in the final minutes of Tipperary’s All-Ireland championship clash with Waterford.

The game at The Ragg was abandoned and the Group 2 fixture will be replayed at a later date. 

The Borris-Ileigh forward is recovering at home after being discharged from hospital last night, and Bourke says her safety was the most important at the time of the incident.

“The latest word on her is that scans are clear, she was sent home but she has very bad concussion,” Bourke tells The42.

“Obviously they were very concerned for her on the sideline. We had our own doctor, we had our physio and the Waterford doctor was there on site as well. And one of our selectors is a nurse as well.

Tipperary and Waterford scramble for the ball Players battling for possession in the game between Tipperary and Waterford. Source: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

“The whole danger was that there would be damage to her neck or have a head injury. It was raining on Saturday but the ground is still very hard. It’s like hitting concrete.”

“They had the presence of mind not to move her because they weren’t sure. You don’t know until the paramedics come.

“She has the concussion and that could take months, depending on how severe it is.”

Bourke added that the paramedics arrived at the grounds in The Ragg within 15 minutes and a decision was subsequently made to airlift Walsh to the Mater Hospital in Dublin.

Speaking on The Sunday Game, referee Andrew Larkin explained that “in accordance with the rules in camogie, we have to call the game off after a 15-minute stoppage.”

Bourke said that re-fixing the game is “not ideal” but stressed that treating Walsh properly was their biggest concern.

Tipperary camogie Source: Tipperary Camogie Twitter

“You can’t take those chances,” said Bourke. “The player welfare is priority. I know it’s not ideal but what can you do?

“Nobody was taking any chances. They had her on oxygen on the ground to help the pain.

Nicole is a soldier. When she goes down, she doesn’t stay down. It’s very distressing. My own daughter plays on that team.”

Bourke concluded:

“You have to put the game to one side when something like that happens. It’s an awful situation and all the players were very distressed. It’s an awful sight to see a girl down and not being able to get up.

We don’t like to see a girl hobble off the field or be carried off the field, but to be airlifted off the field is a whole different ball game.”

Waterford were leading by 1-15 to 0-14 with three minutes of normal time remaining when Walsh suffered her injury.

The details for the re-fixed clash will be confirmed at a later date.

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