Former star takes National League to court for concussions

Max Rooke, who has been a pro for 8 years, wants to warn about the dangers of concussions in his sport.

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Carlton's Australian soccer team during training in Melbourne on June 30, 2022. (WILLIAM WEST/AFP)

Voices are raised again against the concussions. While the movement has already gained momentum in the world of rugby and the biggest American football league (NFL) experienced a similar situation in 2012, Australian football is now also concerned. Indeed, the Australian Football League (AFL) is itself placed in the dock. Former professional Max Rooke filed a class action lawsuit in the Supreme Court of Victoria in Melbourne on Tuesday 14 March. His lawyer, Michel Margalit, also specified that more than 60 players have already come forward to join the action.

With 135 games played in the AFL, at the Geelong club, Max Rooke has worn out his physique from what was, until 2010, his job. Today he wants to get paid for an activity that has marked his brain. Through a press release, his representative directly attacks the national league and talks about it “Permanent Life-Altering Concussion Injuries Caused by AFL Neglect”.

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Injuries caused by multiple concussions can leave irreparable and potentially very dangerous sequelae. Like many contact sports, they have neurological disorders that cause signs of dementia and even traumatic brain damage. Injuries that have a major impact on the daily lives of these former athletes. “The injuries suffered by this group of former AFL players have had a devastating impact on their lives and those of their loved ones.insists Michel Margalit. Some of the players who joined this historic class action never managed to hold down jobs after leaving the AFL.”.

In rugby union, 275 former players have sought compensation for brain damage in a class action lawsuit, including 2003 World Cup winner Steve Thompson with England and former England captain Ryan Jones Wales. In the United States, the class action lawsuit of more than 4,500 players, who won, led to the NFL to pay a billion dollars compensation to the complainants.

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