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Tackle that left footballer in agony

PUBLISHED: 23:53 14 December 2002 | UPDATED: 13:11 03 March 2010

RESILIENT teenage footballer Jonathan Parsons today relived the tackle that left him writhing in agony with a fractured leg and dislocated ankle.

The 19-year-old suffered the horrific injuries just ten minutes into a Metaltec Suffolk and Ipswich League Division Three game between Needham Market 'A' and Tattingstone United on Saturday .

RESILIENT teenage footballer Jonathan Parsons today relived the tackle that left him writhing in agony with a fractured leg and dislocated ankle.

The 19-year-old suffered the horrific injuries just ten minutes into a Metaltec Suffolk and Ipswich League Division Three game between Needham Market 'A' and Tattingstone United on Saturday .

For Mr Parsons, who has just been made redundant from his job as an electrician, the news capped nightmare few days for him.

"Now I've got no money coming in and I haven't even done my Christmas shopping, he said.

The centre midfielder had just picked up the ball when he suffered the injury.

He said: "I started running with the ball but the next thing I knew was that I got a tackle from behind and I heard my leg go crack. I heard it break even before I fell over and I was in agony at the time."

An air ambulance was quickly scrambled to Green Lane, Tattingstone, where Mr Parsons was writhing in agony on the floor. The game was abandoned as players from both sides did what they could to help and to keep Mr Parsons talking.

"I didn't really know what to do, said Mr Parsons. "A lot of people scream but I didn't make that much noise. I remember telling people to get off my leg. It felt like somebody was twisting it but there was no one anywhere near."

Mr Parsons was taken to Ipswich Hospital, where he underwent a one-and-a-half-hour operation. He now faces the prospect of a further operation in eight weeks time to remove the metal pins and plates from his ankle and leg.

"I've got a lot of pain and months of recovery to go through," said Mr Parsons, who lives in Bury Road, Stowmarket. "It's going to take a lot of physio and I've got to build up my leg muscle again. I'm just taking it a day at a time."

Since the injury, Mr Parsons, a former Stowmarket High School pupil, has had plenty of time to contemplate the fateful tackle, although he doesn't plan to take any legal action.

"I don't think he deliberately meant it and I don't hold any grudges, he said. "He didn't mean to do it but the tackle broke my leg. It was late but we get them every game. But it was by no means fair and he didn't get the ball."

David Edevane, secretary of Tattingstone United, said his club wished Mr Parsons a speedy recovery from his injury.

He said: "It wasn't a malicious tackle. It more of a combination of the tackle and the way they fell.

"You get that sort of tackle every game but the referee didn't book him so it was no more than a free kick."

Ipswich Town fan Mr Parsons now plans to spend his Saturday afternoons watching rather than playing football.

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