Probe into incident after Schools’ Cup concussion controversy

An investigation is underway into an incident which followed a suspected concussion in Thursday’s Bank of Ireland Leinster Schools’ Senior Cup game between Cistercian College, Roscrea and Gonzaga College.
Probe into incident after Schools’ Cup concussion controversy

It is understood that a Gonzaga medic remonstrated with match referee Gary Glennon who had insisted a player be removed from the field after sustaining a blow to the head.

Leinster Rugby’s Schools Committee will hold its own internal investigation following receipt of the official referee’s report.

But, given the seriousness of the issue, Leinster Rugby yesterday issued a statement to “clarify a number of issues to alleviate any doubt.” The statement noted that: “The referee is the ultimate arbiter of all games played at all levels and it is with he/she that any final decision rests with regard to on-field activity and this includes the removal of a player for medical reasons as detailed in IRB Law 3.9. (If the referee decides — with or without the advice of a doctor or other medically qualified person — that a player is so injured that the player should stop playing, the referee may order that player to leave the playing area. The referee may also order an injured player to leave the field in order to be medically examined).

“Leinster Rugby would also like to direct all of those involved with the game of rugby in Leinster to the following link (http://www.irishrugby.ie/concussion) which outlines clearly and concisely the protocols should a concussion be suspected at training or during a match at any level of the domestic game.

“In summary, Leinster Rugby would ask all those involved in the domestic game to inform themselves of their responsibilities to STOP – INFORM – REST – RETURN and if a player has any one of the signs or symptoms of concussion he/she should be removed from the field of play and not allowed to return. Leinster Rugby will be making no further comment on this matter until all of the information is to hand and the internal investigation has been completed.”

According to the IRFU website: “The referees role is crucial in the recognition of concussion and then the removal and hand-over of care of the injured player. Therefore the referee must be aware of the visible clues and the signs and symptoms of concussion. Should there be any suspicion of concussion the player must be removed. A useful phrase in this situation could be: ‘I am removing this player from the field of play with a suspected concussion. He/She needs to be monitored and should be assessed medically’.

“Should there be disagreement (even by a medically trained person) with the referees decision to seek the removal of the player then the referee must apply Law 3.9 and order the player to leave the playing area.”

Champions Cistercian College, Roscrea won 27-17.

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