Harlequins player back on the pitch after serious injury

Harlequins prop Simon Kerrod knew immediately that he’d damaged his ankle badly in a game against Gloucester in 2022.

He said: “I went in for a jackal with a ruck and a clean out on the side and I felt my ankle suddenly go ping. I thought this is not normal. Something was definitely wrong. I was limping and there was almost no power in the ankle.”

Simon strapped up his ankle for the next few games and then finally realised it wasn’t getting any better. The Harlequins medical team – led by Head of Medical Services Mike Lancaster - arranged for him to have an MRI scan which showed that he had complex ligament and tendon injuries. Through the club’s partnership with Fortius Clinic, Simon went to see Consultant Foot and Ankle Surgeon Professor James Calder at Fortius Clinic in Marylebone.

James said: “I saw Simon in March 2023. The most important thing was to get the diagnosis right, and that's where the medical team at Harlequins came in. I went through the imaging with Simon and Mike in the clinic. We discussed what problems Simon had got at the time but also how he hoped to progress over the rest of the season.”

According to Mike, the relationship between Harlequins and Fortius gives the players and club’s medical team the reassurance and confidence that the players have the best possible care.

He said: “The pressure on the player is the one thing as a welfare piece we like to look after the most, making sure the player and the family are taken care of and that they understand the process, and the journey they're going to go through on the rehab.”

James explained to Simon that although he needed surgery and it was a serious injury, he could continue to play until the end of the season.

Simon had surgery at the Fortius Surgical Centre in Marylebone in May 2023 before making his full return to rugby in October.

He said: “Knowing I had James and his level of expertise allowed me to have the confidence that I was going to get back on the pitch. It was just a matter of how long it was going to take and what the rehab would involve. I knew that I was in the best hands.

“As a professional rugby player, one of the things in the back of your mind is how serious are the injuries going to be because it’s a physical game. You can have niggles, you can have injuries and when they come, you never want them to be serious. So when James sat me down and said this is really serious, you're going to need a reconstruction, your mindset tells you to be positive.

“But sometimes it does weigh on you that this is a bit more serious than you thought. So to be back and be better than I was before is just awesome and I can’t thank Fortius enough for that.”


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