Jamie Cudmore Reveals Clermont’s Shocking Hostile Reaction To Concussion Suit

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Jamie Cudmore is leading the way in the fight against concussions in rugby.

The towering lock recently set up the Rugby Safety Network along with his wife Jennifer in order to preserve the past and protect the future of rugby player’s when it comes to head related injuries and how they are dealt with.

Cudmore is currently taking legal action against his former club Clermont due to their treatment of him when he suffered a number of concussions. Cudmore similarly suffered a concussion during the 2015 Champions Cup semi-final following a collision with Billy Vunipola. Despite a doctor deciding that he was unfit to continue playing, he was allowed return to the field.

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A fortnight later, Cudmore would play in the final against Toulon, before being taken off after sustaining another head injury.

I had some really bad after effects in the week following. I was given complete rest. I was brought into see a neurosurgeon. I did many tests during the 10 days after that and I was deemed fit to play in the final two weeks later in Twickenham.

Clearly I wasn’t good enough to play because the first contact I made in the final, about 10 minutes in, I was concussed again in a tackle with Chris Masoe.

Just the impact of my shoulder going into Masoe’s side was enough to spark me out.

I was taken off. I passed the HIA. I was allowed to come back on the field as I had passed. Later on in the game I suffered a head knock with Juan Smith. I went off for blood. During that time I was getting stitched up I became very nauseous and began vomiting in the changing room in front of a few other players who were there. I was still allowed to go back on the field and finish the game.

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Following the shocking turn of events, Cudmore and his legal team drafted a letter stating the facts of what happened over those two April weeks. He asked Clermont to assure him that in future the World Rugby rules would be adhered to and that no other player would have to go through the same treatment that he had been through. He wanted reassurance that players would in future be taken off the pitch if in a similar condition.

How did Clermont respond to this later? Turns out they weren’t very happy. Cudmore explained on Off The Ball last night.

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Jamie Cudmore: The response was, ‘How dare you send this letter to us? It’s like you’re…’

Joe Molloy: Betraying?

Cudmore: Betraying the club, exactly. ‘How dare you send this letter to us, it’s like you’re ambushing us.’ And this is me, by myself, with the general manager, the assistant manager, the coach and the two doctors in a room, and basically everyone took a turn tearing a strip off me.

The two doctors said that I was lying, the coach and the general manager re-iterated that I am betraying the club by attacking them like this.

I said, ‘Listen, guys. I’m not attacking anybody. What I am doing here is I’m putting a line in the sand, saying: this is what happened. I’m not happy with it. And I just want you guys to assure me that it’s not going to happen again.’

All I got (in response) was anger, disbelief that I would even have the gall to bring something like that up. And especially in the form of a letter.

After spending most of his career with the French club, Cudmore understandably couldn’t believe their treatment of him.

My wife and I were beside ourselves with that treatment, especially after battling for that club for eleven years – and for me to be treated like that and basically kicked out of the back door afterwards…it’s very disappointing to finish eleven years in a club and it goes sour like it did.

Shocking from Clermont.

[Transcript courtesy of Balls.ie]

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Jason Hennessy

Jason is the editor at RugbyLAD. Any queries big or small you can reach him at jason@rugbylad.com

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