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Brayshaw won’t be rushed

Matt Burgan  May 16, 2017 6:10 PM

Player Update: Angus Brayshaw Angus Brayshaw explains his next steps forward in regards to his concussion injury.

ANGUS Brayshaw says there is no pressure to return to the game as quickly as possible, after suffering his latest concussion setback.

Brayshaw sustained another head knock in the VFL, playing for Casey against the Northern Blues at Preston City Oval last Sunday.

General manager of football operations Josh Mahoney said the club was fully supportive of Brayshaw and would not rush him back, after he suffered his second concussion in less than a month.

“Unfortunately, Angus had a hit early on in the first quarter on the weekend and it was the second hit in the last three weeks,” he told melbournefc.com.au.

“Our approach to this hit, is firstly for Angus to recover from this latest concussion. And to take the opportunity to get some advice from other experts and to gather a lot of information, and work out the best plan going forward.

“It’s important to note that prior to Angus returning to play his last game, he had an extensive brain scan, which showed that there were no signs of damage.”

Mahoney said several key steps had now been put into place for Brayshaw.

“The plan moving forward will be a combination of recovery, as well as having Angus return to training to set-up drills that allow him to improve his technique, as well as gradually introducing more contact to improve his confidence.

“In terms of time frames, Angus will miss the next two weeks and from that point on, it becomes a week-to-week proposition, where Angus will return when he feels comfortable and confident in his ability to perform.”

Although he was adamant he would play again and was “extremely confident” about taking the field again, Brayshaw acknowledged it had been difficult being on the sidelines.  

“It’s hard. It’s my fourth concussion – there was two last year and this is my second one this year,” he told Melbourne TV.  

“I just want to be out there playing. But it could be worse and there have been some things that have put my situation in perspective.

“I’m lucky, as it could’ve been a lot worse … so I’m lucky we’ve got a great team at Melbourne and a very supportive group of family and friends.

“It is what it is and footy is a contact sport and these things happen – and I’ve said that a few times. I’ll look after myself and I’ll get through this and I’ll be fine.”

Brayshaw said he caught up with the doctors on Tuesday, and was feeling OK.  

“I’m actually recovering pretty well from this concussion,” he said.

“I’m recovering well and it’s not ideal … but I’ve got a great bunch of guys and team at Melbourne who are looking after me.

“We’re going to be consulting a few other experts and collecting the best-informed decision we possibly can. We’ve got to play it safe and I think my long-term health is the most important thing.”

Brayshaw said he passed a brain test last week with flying colours.

“It was an in-depth assessment on my brain to see if there was any damage lingering from any of my past episodes and I did really well,” he said.  

“It was really comforting to know that the test showed that my brain was fully functional.

“I take a lot of confidence out of that and I think now it’s managing to make sure it stays damage free, which the best way I can put it, and I can live a long and healthy life.”

Brayshaw was philosophical about his separate incidents and said it was simply part of the game.

“I got hit after I got rid [of the ball] three weeks ago and then on the weekend I was just going after a 50/50 ball, and I got a pretty solid whack,” he said.

“You try to connect the dots, but I don’t think they’re there. It’s just really bad luck and that’s certainly the way I’m looking at it. I’ve just had a few in a row.

“I want to play footy – it’s really that simple for me, but at the same time, I want to look after my brain, so I’ll be working closely with a lot of experts to figure out the safest way to do that.”