‘I heard my neck snap’
Jordan Daley defied the odds when he fractured a vertebrae during a rugby league game and is now on the road to recovery.
A REGULAR Saturday footy game a couple of weeks ago could have had tragic consequences for St Clair’s Jordan Daley after a tackle went horribly wrong.
The St Clair Comets under-14/1 player, who was up against arch rivals St Marys at The Kingsway, recalls what happened.
“I was running down the sideline and was tackled around my legs; I fell on my bum but then another player came behind me and landed on my head,” Jordan, 13, said.
“I heard my neck snap and pushed him off and just laid there.”
Jordan’s mother Amanda Hampshire was on the sidelines.
“Every time your child gets tackled you just wait for them to get up, but the boys who tackled him called over the trainer so I knew he was hurt,” Ms Hampshire said.
“I ran out and Jordan said to me, ‘Mum, my neck snapped’. It was amazing how calm I stayed, trying to tell him it would be OK. But on the inside I was screaming.”
Jordan was taken by ambulance to Nepean Hospital where he was put in a full body brace for two days before being transferred to The Children’s Hospital at Westmead for an MRI scan.
Not only had Jordan fractured his C5 vertebrae, he had torn all the ligaments in his neck.
Jordan said the first days in hospital were difficult.
“Being in the brace was horrible, I couldn’t move at all,” he said.
Despite the severity of her son’s injuries, Ms Hampshire said the family was positive due to all the community support.
“I got a phone call from the mother of the boy who tackled Jordan to ask how he was doing. She said her son was upset about it all,” she said.
“Right from the start we were contacted by the St Marys side daily – they have just been phenomenal.
“We have had messages from everyone in the Penrith district. We just can’t thank people enough.”
St Clair Comets president Bill Borg said Jordan’s return to the football field to cheer his mates on was encourag- ing. “Jordan come back for the last game of the season last week,” Mr Borg said. “Funnily enough, they hadn’t won all season and they won their two games with Jordan cheering them on.”
Jordan will spend the next few weeks in a neck brace but his road to recovery looks more positive than most.
Doctors told the family there were not many people that walked again after an injury such as Jordan’s.
Unfortunately Jordan’s story is not an uncommon one. NSW Ambulance crews were called to 12 sports-related injuries from March to July in Sydney alone.
... it was amazing how calm I stayed telling him it would be OK but on the inside I was screaming AMANDA HAMPSHIRE
Jordan Daley at the Children’s Hospital, Westmead, and (inset) with his St Clair Comets teammates. Inset picture: Justin Sanson
Jordan Daley, 13, enjoys a laugh with his teammates Josh Bonora, 14, Dylan Wearne, 13, Luke Lawrence, 14, and Michael Jabuka, 14, and (below) Jordan is an enthusiastic spectator on the sidelines. Pictures: Justin Sanson