The grandson of former Australian Prime Minister Bob Hawke was in intensive care last week following an atrocious hit by Manly winger Leon Bott.
Bott, a former NRL player, lined up Randwick player David Dillon in their Shute Shield match in Sydney, then flattened him without the ball while he waited to take an up and under.
Dillon amazingly played on, but was taken to hospital two days later for emergency surgery to have his ruptured spleen removed. Another hour without treatment could have been life-threatening.
“He’s recovering well. Obviously he’s still pretty sore,” said head coach Gary Ella.
“He’s in good spirits, talking about coming and watching the Randwick game in a fortnight – I don’t know if that’s going to happen though.”
One can survive without a spleen, which is a key part of the immune system and generates vital disease fighting antibodies. When severely ruptured, it is surgically removed, but the person can become susceptible to infections such as pneumonia and meningitis.
Dillon, 26, was expected to stay in hospital for a week following the surgery, and it was unsure as to whether hed be able to play rugby again. Bott, the man who made the tackle, is understood to be deeply upset.
In a repeat of the Matt Giteau tackle on Fourie Du Preez, which was fairly similar although far less lethal, Bott has not been cited.
The Citing Commisioner found that the hit did not require a red card, so therefore the yellow card handed out by referee Stuart Dickinson was sufficient.
Do you agree with the ruling that a yellow was sufficient, or should this moment of madness have been punished further?
Note: Thanks to clubrugby.com.au