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James O’Connor Has Gone To Extreme Lengths Just To Get Out On The Pitch This Season

James O’Connor has endured a frustrating start to life with the Sale Sharks in the Aviva Premiership after making just 13 appearances for the club this season.

The former Wallaby has long suffered from an ankle issue and it is this injury which has ruled him out for the rest of the season.

O’Connor will undergo surgery so he is back at 100% for the 2018/19 campaign and he has revealed in an Instagram post today the extreme lengths to which he has gone to make sure that he is fit enough to take the field despite the persisting ankle injury.

O’Connor revealed that he has self-injected anaesthetic into his ankle so that he is able to play, not because Sale or his former club Toulon told him to do so but that he was desperate to play rugby.

Hey guys, just wanted to keep you all in the loop. I’ve recently undergone surgery to clean out my ankle and have another operation in 2 weeks to fix some complications that have arisen as a direct result of the reconstruction work I had done last year. It’s been a very humbling experience having to stop and process everything that has happened recently but since making the decision to embrace this reflective period rather than fight it, I have started to let go and re-connect with my true power!

On the 3rd day of preseason in 2016, I injured my ankle at Toulon. Since then I’ve been fighting to play for nearly 2 seasons! It got to the point where I was only training 1 session a week and injecting it with local anaesthetic just to be able to take the field. At the time I knew this wasn’t in my bodies best interest but I was so determined to play and win a final with Toulon that I disregarded all the signs and carelessly played on. I Ended up getting the reconstruction 5 days after losing that final and moved across to Sale Sharks to start fresh. 

After the first training session, I knew my ankle hadn’t healed but again, I ignored the signs because I wanted to make an impact at my new club. I masked the pain through various means and just got on with the job. I did whatever I could to get onto the field to play…3 games on, 2 weeks off and cortisol to PRP injections became my routine! This pressure in no way came from the club. I thought I could beat this through force & never actually allowed myself to stop and heal correctly. So now I’m here in the exact same place I was last year, 1 surgery down with another to go…but this time around we (club & I) have taken all the correct measures and discussions with my surgeon, going over all possibilities and put together a great rehab program to get me back for next season faster, stronger and pain free! 

Sounds funny but I can’t even express how excited I am to just take this time and recover properly, heal correctly and start playing with power again! Just want to recognise my teammates and coaches for having the patience and supporting me through this year. Also, anyone who has been following my journey..

 

Hey guys, just wanted to keep you all in the loop. I’ve recently undergone surgery to clean out my ankle and have another operation in 2 weeks to fix some complications that have arisen as a direct result of the reconstruction work I had done last year. It’s been a very humbling experience having to stop and process everything that has happened recently but since making the decision to embrace this reflective period rather than fight it, I have started to let go and re-connect with my true power! On the 3rd day of preseason in 2016, I injured my ankle at Toulon. Since then I’ve been fighting to play for nearly 2 seasons! It got to the point where I was only training 1 session a week and injecting it with local anaesthetic just to be able to take the field. At the time I knew this wasn’t in my bodies best interest but I was so determined to play and win a final with Toulon that I disregarded all the signs and carelessly played on. I Ended up getting the reconstruction 5 days after losing that final and moved across to Sale Sharks to start fresh. After the first training session I knew my ankle hadn’t healed but again, I ignored the signs because I wanted to make an impact at my new club. I masked the pain through various means and just got on with the job. I did whatever I could to get onto the field to play…3 games on, 2 weeks off and cortisol to PRP injections became my routine! This pressure in no way came from the club. I thought I could beat this through force & never actually allowed myself to stop and heal correctly. So now I’m here in the exact same place I was last year, 1 surgery down with another to go…but this time around we (club & I) have taken all the correct measures and discussions with my surgeon, going over all possibilities and put together a great rehab program to get me back for next season faster, stronger and pain free! Sounds funny but I cant even express how excited I am to just take this time and recover properly, heal correctly and start playing with power again! Just want to recognise my team mates and coaches for having the patience and supporting me through this year. Also anyone who has been following my journey..

A post shared by James O’Connor (@jamesoconnor832) on

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Author: Sean McMahon

Sean is Deputy Editor and head rugby writer. You can contact him by email seanmc@punditarena.com or on Twitter