Rugby: a quadriplegic teenager after a serious accident in the UNSS, school matches suspended

It is a tragedy that occurred on a site, just before the Christmas school holidays. Mathias, a 17-year-old high school student at Saint-Pierre de Tarbes high school, was seriously injured on Wednesday December 14 during a meeting between his establishment and that of Notre-Dame de Garaison de Monléon-Magnoac. An accident linked to a tackle, according to the direction of the National Union of School Sports (UNSS) of the Hautes-Pyrénées.

The young man has since been quadriplegic and is still hospitalized. News of his state of health come from the club where he is dismissed, Stade Bagnérais. The latter launched a Leetchi kitty to financially support Mathias and his family. More than 750 people have already contributed.

“Mathias’ parents tell us this Tuesday, January 3 that Mathias is no longer on artificial respiration and that he is doing a lot of exercises to make his right lung work as well as his diaphragm which reacts with difficulty. A lot of effort to make which tires him enormously, writes in a publication posted on the crowdfunding platform one of the leaders. Mathias is in a state of great fatigue, the doctors are still confident in his condition and are monitoring him carefully. »

Practice suspended across France two days later

A local tragedy, with national repercussions. The national director of the UNSS, Olivier Girault, decided in a letter written on December 16 to “suspend from this day and until further notice, the practice of rugby in all its forms” within the framework of school meetings. . “The idea was not to trivialize the accident, underlines Hugues Georges, departmental director of the UNSS in the Hautes-Pyrénées. We had to take a break to put things in perspective and reflect. »

If the decision fell on Friday just before the school holidays and therefore without immediate consequence, it was considered “incomprehensible” by the Snep-FSU, union of EPS teachers. “You are thus casting doubt on the professional skills of PE teachers”, he explains in a letter addressed to the former Olympic champion handball player and posted on his website.

“An accident, however dramatic it may be, and far from us to minimize it, cannot lead to the exclusion of a sporting activity in such a rush when an investigation is probably just beginning to be carried out and the National Joint Commission (CMN ) has not yet met”, continues the text.

Towards a supervised recovery

The latter was held Tuesday in Paris and worked all day on the possible resumption of activity. She delivered a series of recommendations, in particular to raise awareness around tackles as a first step, but also to develop training courses for teachers on the subject.

Contacted, Olivier Girault indicates that he will decide “very quickly” on this file to determine a date for the resumption of rugby in the UNSS. “The children will resume, of course, he explains to Parisian-Today in France. But there are points of vigilance that we must examine for a serene resumption of rugby. »

Rugby: a quadriplegic teenager after a serious accident in the UNSS, school matches suspended