Fatialofa walking unaided is a 'miracle', says wife

  • Rugby
  • Saturday, 21 Mar 2020

FILE PHOTO: Rugby Union - Premiership - Worcester Warriors v Leicester Tigers - Sixways Stadium, Worcester, Britain - February 24, 2019 Leicester Tigers' Graham Kitchener in action with Worcester's Michael Fatialofa Action Images/Andrew Boyers

(Reuters) - Injured rugby player Michael Fatialofa provided a bit of good news amid the coronavirus gloom when a video on Saturday showed the Worcester lock walking unaided 11 weeks after he suffered a serious neck injury.

New Zealand-born Fatialofa was shown walking in a video posted by his wife Tatiana on Instagram.

"You're witnessing a miracle that even medical professionals can't explain," she wrote. "They are so (shocked) by his progress given his critical level of injury."

Fatialofa, 27, suffered the injury while playing against Saracens on Jan. 4, less than a minute after coming onto the field in the second half. He has been in hospital since.

"He was literally paralysed from the neck down just 10 weeks ago and currently spinal cord injuries do not have a clinical cure, but my amazing husband is proof that god is never limited to human wisdom. So so so thankful," his wife added.

Fatialofa had surgery for a spinal contusion, which causes compression on the spinal cord and can lead to paralysis.

His wife said her visits to the hospital will become more difficult because of the coronavirus pandemic.

"We've been advised by the hospital that visiting probably will be reduced to only one hour soon and while I understand completely it's still so hard on the heart," she said.

Worcester were going to use their home match against Harlequins on April 11 as a fundraiser for Fatialofa but that game will no longer go ahead as the Premiership is suspended until April 14 at least.

(Reporting by Martyn Herman, editing by Ed Osmond)

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