The family of a rugby player left in a coma by a late-night in­ci­dent are con­vinced some­one, some­where knows what hap­pened to him

Wales On Sunday - - FRONT PAGE - CATHY OWEN Re­porter cathy.owen@waleson­

IT WAS a month ago that rugby player Scott Bes­sant was found crit­i­cally in­jured with hor­rific in­juries all over his body. Since then, the fa­ther-of-two has been in a coma at the Univer­sity Hos­pi­tal of Wales with his de­voted family by his bed­side.

As one of six chil­dren, Scott’s par­ents and sib­lings have been tak­ing it in turns to sit with him, pray­ing for any pos­i­tive signs. But so far there has been noth­ing.

To­day, the family have ques­tions about how this hap­pened and are ap­peal­ing for any­one with even the slight­est bit of in­for­ma­tion to come for­ward.

Friends have come up with a £3,000 re­ward for in­for­ma­tion that will lead to con­vic­tion.

The family be­lieve the 34-year-old was at­tacked and some­one out there must know some­thing about what hap­pened.

Brother-in-law Neil Chere says: “We are con­stantly re­fresh­ing our ap­peals in the hope that some­one comes for­ward. It might jog some­one’s mem­ory about that night. Even if it is some­thing very small it could be some­thing that could help us piece to­gether what hap­pened.”

The family have been able to work out Scott’s move­ments in the early hours of Au­gust 13.

He spent Satur­day night at the Lit­tle Crown Inn in Pon­ty­pool watch­ing lo­cal bands per­form.

The ex-Wales Dragon­hearts full-back left the pub with a friend and they went their sep­a­rate ways around 12.30am to 12.45am.

But no­body knows what hap­pened from then until Scott was dis­cov­ered with “hor­rific” in­juries in Pen­twyn Lane, next to the bridge where the Pon­ty­pool to Blae­navon cy­cle path crosses, by a man on his way to work at 5.15am on Sun­day.

Neil says: “We have spo­ken to a lot of Scott’s friends and have man­aged to work out where he was until the early hours of Sun­day morn­ing, but there around four hours where we just don’t know what hap­pened.

“We are so grate­ful to the man who found him and the paramedics who turned up. What they did at the scene saved Scott’s life. It was that serious.”

The family were first made aware of what had hap­pened when po­lice ar­rived at Scott’s par­ents at 7am on Sun­day.

Neil says: “We were told that we needed to get to the Heath hos­pi­tal as quickly as pos­si­ble. My wife and I were due to be on our way to Mexico to cel­e­brate our 25th wed­ding an­niver­sary, but there was no ques­tion of us go­ing.

“When we got to the hos­pi­tal we were taken in a small room and we just didn’t know what they were go­ing to tell us. It was the long­est day of our lives, the doc­tors were telling us that they were monitoring him not just hour by hour, but minute my minute.”

At first the family were see­ing lit­tle glim­mers of hope, but then in­fec­tion set in and Scott re­mains in a coma.

But the family say they have been able to get through the dark days thanks to the sup­port they have re­ceived around the world.

“The lo­cal com­mu­nity has been out­stand­ing and we have re­ceived so much pos­i­tive sup­port it has been over­whelm­ing,” says Neil.

“One night we asked peo­ple to light can­dles for him and we had peo­ple tak­ing part in Nige­ria, Italy and Greece. It has been un­be­liev­able and has given the family real so­lace.”

One of the most dif­fi­cult things for them has been trying to ex­plain to Scott’s young son and daugh­ter where their dad is.

Neil says: “We are trying to pro­tect them as best we can. They are aware that daddy is in hos­pi­tal, but not how serious it is.”

Gwent Po­lice are ap­peal­ing for any in­for­ma­tion that will help their in­ves­ti­ga­tion. Call 101, quot­ing log 136 13/8/17 or al­ter­na­tively call Crimestop­pers anony­mously on 0800 555 111.

For­mer Wales Dragon­hearts full-back Scott Bes­sant who was dis­cov­ered se­ri­ously in­jured Scott’s family are ap­peal­ing for any­one with even the slight­est bit of in­for­ma­tion to come for­ward

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