The Ealing versus Cornish Pirates game came to a halt as a player was rendered unconscious.

The rugby union match between Ealing Trailfinders and Cornish Pirates on Saturday was abandoned after Ben Grubb, a player from the Pirates, was knocked unconscious by a high tackle and later taken to hospital.

A spectator witnessed Grubb “convulsing on the ground” following a “high shot” by Kyle Whyte, the Ealing prop, at the Trailfinders Sports Club in west London, according to the Pirates.

At the time of the incident, the home side, who currently top the Championship, were leading 12-0 in the 62nd minute. Grubb, a 20-year-old player with dual club registration and one appearance for Exeter, sustained the injury.

A statement on the Trailfinders website confirmed the abandonment of the fixture and expressed their concern for Ben Grubb, his family, and the Cornish Pirates. They also wished him a speedy recovery.

62 l We exit well with some adventure, to run from the 22. It’s a high shot and a penalty, potentially more as we wait.

12-0 #COYP

Ethan Wetherell, a performance analyst for the Cornish Pirates, described the incident, stating that Grubb was rendered unconscious immediately upon impact and was in a confused and disoriented state afterwards. Medical staff immediately attended to him and further assistance was provided upon noticing signs of a possible seizure.

Grubb, a former British rowing champion, received extensive treatment on the field before being transported to the hospital in an ambulance. The players had already left the field by then.

Wetherell explained, “After a while, they finally managed to get him back on his feet, but due to his condition, he was pushing away anyone who tried to assist him. Eventually, an ambulance arrived on the pitch to take him away.”

Regarding the tackle, Wetherell stated it was not intentionally malicious and that Whyte attempted to make a forceful impact but misjudged it. He added, “It would have resulted in a red card, but the game was called off before that could happen.”

Brain injuries are a highly concerning issue in rugby. Nearly 300 former players, including England’s 2003 Rugby World Cup winner Steve Thompson and Wales international Alix Popham, are taking legal action against governing bodies, citing damage suffered during their careers.

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