Rushali Jhaveri of Utpal Sanghvi School (Juhu) sustained a serious knee injury during a Mumbai Schools Sports Association (MSSA) girls' U-14 Div-II inter-school football match against Udayachal School at Cooperage on Tuesday afternoon.
Shockingly, there was no doctor at the venue to treat her. Nor was even basic first aid medical kit provided by MSSA. There was no arrangement even for ice which is an essential applicant in most injuries.
Except for groundsman Ravi Kahar, who was assigned by MSSA football secretary Sebastian Fernandes to conduct the matches, there was no other MSSA official present, who could decide on the course of action to treat the injured player. It was a pitiful sight to see Rushali screaming in pain, while her coach Abigail Fernandes and a staff member of the school, carried her from the ground to the school bus to be taken back to the school, in a plastic chair.
It was later learnt that the Rushali has sustained an avulsion fracture to her left knee and will have to undergo surgery today.
An Utpal Sanghvi player attends to Rushali Jhaveri at Cooperage
An avulsion fracture is an injury to the bone in the spot where a tendon or ligament attaches to that bone. When such a fracture occurs, the tendon or ligament pulls off a piece of the bone. This explains the excruciating pain the girl was in at the ground.Fr Jude accepts MSSA's fault
MSSA president Fr Jude Rodrigues was shocked to learn that his association had failed to provide a doctor at the venue. "I don't understand why our football secretary [Sebastian Fernandes] did not have a doctor present for the matches. It's important to have a doctor and more so for girls matches. I will ensure that there are female doctors or physios present for the next matches," Fr Rodrigues told mid-day.Vaz blames MSSA
Souter Vaz, Hon Gen Secretary, Western India Football Association (WIFA), was annoyed. "We [WIFA] provide MSSA the ground free of cost, but it's their responsibility to ensure that there are proper medical facilities in place to assist an injured player," fumed Vaz.
Sudhakar Rane, Hon Gen Secretary, Mumbai District Football Association (MDFA) was also disappointed at MSSA's callousness.
"We, at MDFA, conduct so many matches, right from the U-8 to U-16 categories and also youth leagues and other senior bigger leagues and ensure that at every match there is a medical professional and/or an ambulance at hand. It's very sad that MSSA does not care for children," said Rane.
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