Crocked Fraser may have played last game

CROCKED Ipswich Rugby Club skipper Fraser Pratt is coming to terms with the fact that he may have played his last game.The 30-year-old New Zealander dislocated his ankle and broke his fibula in two places in Saturday's Eastern Counties Cup Final defeat by Shelford at Humber Doucy Lane.

By Mel Henderson

CROCKED Ipswich Rugby Club skipper Fraser Pratt is coming to terms with the fact that he may have played his last game.

The 30-year-old New Zealander dislocated his ankle and broke his fibula in two places in Saturday's Eastern Counties Cup Final defeat by Shelford at Humber Doucy Lane.

He underwent an operation that night, which involved having a plate and screws inserted, and returned home on Monday to launch his lengthy rehabilitation.

Now is not the time to be making decisions about his future, but Pratt admitted: “I was toying with the idea beforehand of maybe calling it a day.

“Now this has happened and to be perfectly honest it's still too fresh in my mind for me to decide anything for certain.

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“I'm not saying I will or won't be back playing. I'm still having flashbacks to the incident. I thought I had a reasonably high pain threshold but I have to confess I let out a couple of yells when it happened.

“For it to happen in such a big game and our last one of the season was a bit of a bummer. You never say never, but I might return to coach rather than play.”

Fly-half Pratt's injury occurred just past the midway stage of the first period, when Ipswich were trailing 7-0 to their Cambridgeshire opponents from two leagues higher.

He added: “Speaking to some of the guys since then it seems a lot of them were affected by what happened to me.

“It was pretty freaky looking - my foot was about 180 degrees round the wrong way - and from what I understand things were a bit shaky and we weren't committing as much as we should for some time afterwards.”

Pratt's wife, Emma, was among the crowd and when she saw the extent of the problem decided to accompany him to hospital. The couple have two young children, four-year-old Elsa and Tom, who was born just six months ago.

Pratt originally joined Ipswich in 1999 and played for two years until his visa ran out. He went home, returned in 2003 and has no plans to leave again.

Pratt, who works as an account executive for an insurance broker, said: “For the next two weeks I've been told to keep the weight off my leg and keep it elevated.

“Then they will X-ray it again and see how it is healing. I'll have another cast fitted for eight weeks, after which I could have to undergo another op to remove the pins.

“This is the worst injury, by some distance, that I have ever suffered. I've had hamstrings, ligaments, that sort of thing, that don't even come close to this.”

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