Daily Express

Ex-rugby star sues club over bar prank injury

- By John Siddle

A FORMER rugby star is suing his former club Saracens, claiming he suffered a career-ending injury on a boozy team-bonding trip.

Matthew Hankin says he suffered concussion after being hit with a fire extinguish­er. The 27-year-old has also brought a lawsuit against former teammate Richard Barrington and former club doctor Ademola Adejuwon.

The Premiershi­p club – who were fined £5.36million last year for salary cap breaches – are fighting the lawsuit.

In papers lodged at the High Court in London, Mr Hankin alleges Mr Barrington struck him with the canister while he was wearing a metal helmet.

The incident was said to have taken place in a bar in Budapest, Hungary, in September 2015.

Mr Hankin alleged Saracens were

“negligent” in passing him fit to play three weeks later, when he was then allegedly further injured.

He was later forced to retire from the game.

In papers submitted to the court by Saracens, it is alleged Mr Hankin was injured during a “drinking game” involving Mr Barrington and others.

It states: “It is alleged that [Mr Barrington] has caused injury to the Claimant by striking him on the head whilst he was wearing a metal helmet with a fire extinguish­er.”

Mr Hankin alleges that Saracens’ physio Nicholas Court failed to assess his injury properly when the team returned to London.

He claims that Dr Adejuwon was

“negligent” in allowing him to play rugby three weeks later.

The papers state that Mr Hankin has not returned to play rugby since October 2015. They add that his “employment with the Appellant came to an end in June 2018” when his contract ran out.

A Saracens spokesman said: “Mr Hankin is pursuing a claim against a former team-mate, his doctor and Saracens.

“Liability is denied and it would not be appropriat­e for the club to comment further in view of the ongoing court proceeding­s.”

A date for the hearing has yet to be set.

Both Mr Barrington and Dr Adejuwon declined to comment on the matter.

 ?? ?? Matthew Hankin alleges he was hit on a Saracens trip
Matthew Hankin alleges he was hit on a Saracens trip

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