Clare’s Conlon calls for officials to pay more heed to head injuries during GAA games
Players’ welfare becoming an issue following a number of incidents in recent games
Clare’s John Conlon who suffered a head injury against Cork. “I don’t remember any of the game.”
Clare forward John Conlon has called for more attention to be paid to head injuries in the GAA.
Conlon said he cannot remember anything after taking a knock in a tackle against Cork’s William Egan in the Munster championship, but feels that more time should be given to players to recover after taking knocks to the head.
After the incident Clare manager Davy Fitzgerald was enraged with the inaction of match referee Barry Kelly and the linesman who he believed had witnessed the incident.
Conlon was withdrawn after 19 minutes and was quickly brought to hospital with soaring blood pressure.
“It happened about five minutes in. I got a bang in the head and I don’t remember any of the game. I had to go to hospital because my blood pressure went up over 200. But thankfully I was fine.
“I was 10 days out but I came around. I think they finally realised (I had a serious head injury) after about 18 or 20 minutes when I asked which way I was playing. Maybe if I was given a chance when the incident occurred.
“But play went on, the free was taken straight away. If they had got that second to assess me thoroughly they could have got me off the field,” said Conlon.
Player welfare was to the fore again last weekend when Sunday Game pundit Donal Óg Cusack highlighted referee Diarmuid Kirwan’s refusal to allow a player take on water during the Clare-Wexford qualifier clash.
Cusack also lambasted the Offaly official for his failure to enquire about the well-being of Wexford’s Thomas Waters, who received lengthy attention for a serious knee injury before being helped off.
Meanwhile, Paudie O’Brien has emerged as an injury concern for Limerick ahead of next month’s All-Ireland SHC semi-final.
O’Brien, who was involved in the incident that saw Cork forward Pat Horgan red-carded on the stroke of half-time, twisted his ankle against the Rebels and went off with 12 minutes remaining.
O’Brien was seen on crutches in Limerick on Monday afternoon. X-rays have revealed no break but ligament damage leaves the wing-back facing another race against time.
O’Brien had battled to overcome a hamstring injury suffered a couple of weeks before last Sunday’s Munster final in order to ensure he was fit to line out for the big game.