WP Under-21 lock breaks neck

2014-09-01 09:00
JD Schickerling (Gallo Images)
Cape Town - Western Province Under-21 lock JD Schickerling narrowly escaped paralysis after breaking his neck against the Blue Bulls Under-21s.

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The 19-year-old Junior Springbok broke his neck in the 4th minute of the Absa Under-21 clash at Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria on Saturday.

Schickerling was injured just after catching a ball from a kick-off when Bulls lock Irne Herbst's shoulder collided with Schickerling's head. Afterwards, the other Bulls lock, Marvin Orie, grabbed the WP player in a headclamp before hurling him to the ground.

Schickerling's mother, Cornelia, told Die Burger that her son was "2mm away from paralysis" after breaking his neck between the 5th and 6th vertebrae.

Schickerling is currently in a Pretoria hospital and is likely to be operated on for a second time to insert a protective plate in his neck to support his spine.

Despite the horrific injury, Schickerling said he is determined to recover and play rugby again.

"We are relieved that the worst is over and that he has feeling in his arms and legs," said WP's senior coach Allister Coetzee.

While there were no allegations of foul play, WP asked for the incident to be investigated.

"We weren't happy with the incident and we brought it under the attention of the citing commissioner," said WP Under-21 coach John Dobson.

The Bulls Under-21s won the game 44-30.

Read more on:    wp  |  jd schickerling  |  cape town  |  rugby

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