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Danny
31-10-2006, 06:40 AM
Paralysed player sues his own club over injuries
Geesche Jacobsen
October 31, 2006
SMH

A MAN left almost quadriplegic after a tackle in an amateur rugby league match is suing his club, and the competition organisers - not the tackler - for the injuries sustained.

Harry Malo was 32 when he played in the A-grade reserve match for the Maroubra Lions at Malabar in July 1998. Only six Lions players turned up, so the club drew on five footballers from its under-19 side, who had already played a game that day.

The Lions' understrength side of 11 was facing 13 fresh players for the South Eastern team.

Mr Malo remembers being tired and having his head down when taking the ball up. He was tackled, felt his neck twist and felt a stinging sensation, the Supreme Court was told in an earlier hearing. He fell, landing on his back. He tried to get up but could not move.

Mr Malo is not criticising the tackler, or anyone in the opposing team. "The tackle was not unlawful or performed in an excessively aggressive manner. It is not alleged that the tackle was dangerous," the court was told.

Rather, he says that because of the "additional physical demands placed upon him by reason of the fatigue of his teammates, and the shortage of players", he became tired and could not adequately deal with the tackle. His club was negligent in permitting the match to go ahead because the team was understrength, Mr Malo will argue when his case goes to trial next year.

He is also suing the South Sydney District Junior Rugby Football League, which ran the competition, but has dropped claims against South Sydney District Rugby League Referees Association and Randwick City Council.

New Zealand-born Mr Malo, an experienced rugby union player, suffered spinal-cord damage and became an incomplete quadriplegic - he has limited use of his arms and upper body.

Justice Carolyn Simpson yesterday ruled Mr Malo's hearing - to determine if the clubs were liable - could go ahead before a jury because "the issues are novel" and it involved possible liability of "those who administer a quintessential community activity".

Syd Uni sports clinic
31-10-2006, 12:23 PM
Yet another example of why we need much better no fault insurance in Australia for catastrophic spinal injuries.

SPK
31-10-2006, 09:39 PM
That's just what the game needs, another lawsuit.

Souths Juniors have the big $$$ though so he might just get a nice settlement.