The Sharks have confirmed that Pat Lambie remains under contract for a further two years, and that there is ‘no truth to rumours that he is contemplating retirement'. CRAIG LEWIS reports.
Lambie collided with teammate Rhyno Smith during the first half of a Super Rugby clash against the Kings on 13 May, with the incident sparking a sequence of largely unfounded speculation that it was a concussion that could throw the future of his rugby career into jeopardy.
Much of the speculation was based around certain presumptions related to the fact that the 26-year-old spent several months recovering from a terrible knock to the head that he suffered in a collision with Ireland flank CJ Stander in a Test match on 11 June last year.
As it turned out, though, Lambie has long been afflicted by migraines, which contributed to continued symptoms that ultimately resulted in a diagnosis that he was in fact suffering from post-concussion syndrome several weeks down the line from his collision with Stander.
It was the reason for Lambie’s lengthy spell on the sidelines even when he was concussion free, with the flyhalf eventually completing the necessary return-to-play protocols that saw him feature for the Boks towards the end of the Rugby Championship, and on their end-of-year tour.
Although there was understandably some concern when Lambie then suffered another concussion in the collision against the Kings, the fact remains that he did not lose consciousness (as was the case when he was knocked out cold by Stander).
Some also misconstrued Lambie’s latest head knock with what is called a ‘double concussive episode’, but this was not the case, as he was not in a situation where he was still getting over the last concussion.
As with any blow to the head, the Sharks’ medical personnel have been conducting the necessary careful player management, while naturally bearing in mind any previous events.
And while speculation has continued to swirl over Lambie’s future, following his omission from the Springbok squad, the Sharks confirmed to SARugbymag.co.za that he was not contemplating retirement.
‘Pat is contracted to the Sharks for a further two years and there is no truth to the rumour that he is contemplating retirement. Our medical team has advised that he requires an extended period of time for his recovery,’ a spokesperson commented.
‘No set date has been determined for his return to play. He remains an important member of our squad and we at the Sharks family, like all rugby fans in our country, hope to see him back on the park soon.’
The Sharks also refuted a report suggesting that Stormers flyhalf Robert du Preez could be heading to the Durban-based franchise next year.
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