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Concussion led to bleed on brain so I plan to change style of play: McHugh

 

By Declan Bogue

Donegal's Ryan McHugh has revealed that the concussion that kept him out of action earlier this year resulted in a bleed on his brain.

Another concussion suffered after the county season necessitated a total break from Kilcar's defence of the Donegal Championship.

Speaking in Philadelphia on the PwC All-Stars tour, McHugh said: "I had one at the start of the league this year and I took about eight weeks off, I had a slight bleed in my brain."

Asked which game he suffered the injury in, he said, "It was a mixture. Three knocks in games. Dublin, Kildare and Tyrone were the three games. Our Doctor, Kevin Moran, is one of the top doctors in Ireland and he was looking after me.

"So I took about six to eight weeks off and I was grand then, 100% after that," he added.

"Unfortunately I went back to the club and we had a challenge match against St Vincent's of Dublin. I picked up another knock and I don't really remember a lot about that. I got the CT scan and was advised again by the doctor to take a longer rest," McHugh said.

"It was a rest you didn't want to take. When you had a chance to play for your club and we were actually county champions last year and we had a chance to defend our title.

"So it was a break you didn't want to take but you have to think of later on in life."

Having missed Kilcar's Championship season, McHugh is ready to resume his county career now and hints at a few changes to his style of directly carrying the ball past opponents.

"Myself and dad (Martin, 1993 All-Ireland winner) were actually on about that. I was reading up on Johnny Sexton and there was a lot written about him and head injuries and concussions," McHugh said.

"He had to change the style of the way he tackles. I don't know the basics of rugby but he said he changed the style of his tackle, the way he went in. He must have been going in with his head or something.

"So it is something I can look at in the future."

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