Wednesday 28 March 2012

Sue -The Highs And Lows Of Football

The story begins about four weeks ago where I was preparing to go to the Cyprus Cup tournament with the England squad.

Although it wasn’t the most successful tournament for us it was enjoyable none the less and the squad learnt valuable lessons. Out of the 5 games that we played I played 4 of them we won 3 lost 1.

On my return my focus turned to my new club Doncaster Rovers Belles, we had our first competitive match in the FA cup against Barnet. A couple of days before the game I received the good news that I had been selected for England’s next qualifier away to Croatia, everything was looking positive for this season and I had a feeling it was going to be a successful one.

Our FA Cup game against Barnet was away and they play at their men’s ground so the pitch was perfect, along with this the sun was shining and as our manager said, “It’s the perfect day for football”. The game kicked off and within ten minutes we were a goal down, the goal scorer being an ex Doncaster player (always tends to happen) I managed to grab the equalizer after 25minutes, not a bad effort even if I do say so myself. Then on 30 minutes my luck changed! I went to block a ball down the line and as I landed I twisted my right knee, I knew straight away that it was something serious, I dislocated my ankle some ten years previous and it was a similar feeling. I was stretched off and taken to hospital where they found no breaks but it was the ligaments that I was concerned with. Thankfully the girls won the game in extra time with Leandra Little scoring the winner.

The Tuesday of that week I went for an MRI scan to see what the damage was, I tried to convince myself and others that it wasn’t serious however I did fear the worst. The MRI showed that I had a grade 2 tear of my medial ligament and I had completely ruptured my ACL ligament which is the anterior cruciate ligament. I was devastated as I knew this was the end of my season and any hopes of England or the Olympics had been shattered. I also had a feeling of guilt about letting my new club down. Thankfully I went see a knee specialist the week after who analyzed my knee and operated the next day. I was pleased it was all done but at the same time apprehensive. Looking at the pictures around his surgery he had operated on Steven Gerrard, Johnny Wilkinson, Freddy Flintoff and many more this put my mind at ease slightly he was obviously good!!

The surgery involved taking a graft from my left hamstring and using that in my right knee to help the ruptured cruciate ligament, so after the operation I had two peg legs thankfully the left one is getting better so I'm hobbling around a bit more now. The part of the rehab that I'm up to at the moment is resting, icing and compressing my leg along with that straightening it and trying to contract my quad. Some people have asked me is this the end and I have actually read reports where they have said this is the case, but I can guarantee I will do everything in my power to get back fitter and stronger than ever I'm a hardworking, motivated positive person and this will get me through it.

Doncaster Rovers Belles and everyone associated with the club have been amazing and I will be back for them next season hopefully helping them get to where they belong and that’s winning. This season I will have to put up with watching and supporting the girls and try to get involved in whatever capacity I am needed in. I will keep you updated with my progress.


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