He is not one of the thousands and thousands of French fans who hope that Antoine Dupont will be back on his feet to guide Les Bleus to the quarter-finals of the Rugby World Cup. Former third line of the XV of France (89 caps), Olivier Magne evoked Saturday on the social network X, formerly Twitter, the possible return from injury of the scrum-half and captain tricolor, operated Friday night after being victim of a maxillo-zygomatic fracture Thursday night Namibia at the Velodrome.
"Preserving the physical integrity of athletes must be a top priority. The possible resumption of Antoine Dupont in competition bothers me and worries me, slips the finalist of the 1999 World Cup. A man's health is priceless regardless of what is at stake in the competition. »
Preserving the physical integrity of athletes must be an absolute priority. The possible resumption of @Dupont9A in competition bothers and worries me. The health of a man is priceless whatever the stakes of the competition. @rugbyworldcup @FranceRugby
— Olivier Magne (@MagneOlivier1) September 23, 2023
His position echoes that of former England international Simon Shaw (71 caps), which the latter details on his LinkedIn account this Saturday. A long text, in which the former second line passed by Toulon explains having had "a similar injury three times" in 1996, 2004 and 2011.
"Precipitating Dupont's return would be a serious mistake"
"Each time, I had to have surgery to reposition the bones and apply the extra support of metal plates," he says. These procedures required a minimum of three to four weeks of convalescence. Each time, I started playing again within that time. »
"My decision to return to play was based solely on examining the bone injury and successfully completing the fracture healing process," he continues. Has an analysis of my brain function ever been deemed necessary? We certainly live in a different era. You don't have to be a neurosurgeon to explain the forces needed to break down facial bones, leading to the fairly obvious conclusion that these forces may have had an effect on Mr. Dupont's brain. »
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"To hasten Dupont's return without ensuring the optimal state of his brain health would be a serious mistake. (...) Comprehensive neurological assessments, extensive cognitive testing and consultation with medical experts are essential to determine when Dupont can safely resume play, Shaw said. A premature return jeopardizes not only the player's career, but also his quality of life. »
The captain of the Blues spoke Saturday via a message published on social networks. "Touched but not sunk. Show must go on. Can't wait to get back to the band. Thank you for your messages," the 26-year-old Stade Toulousain player wrote on Saturday morning. He must resume training, without contact at first, in ten days.