Bath have said that they will not be risking the long-term health of Sam Underhill who is reportedly still showing signs of the concussion he suffered while playing for England.
The flanker was injured during England’s international against Australia at Twickenham in November, the second time this season that he sustained a concussion.
While Bath is eager to recall Underhill, the club is aware of the risks involved and rugby director Todd Blackadder said, “He is still really symptomatic. On Tuesday, he still had symptoms of what happened to him playing for England. It is one of those really frustrating ones.
“We want him out there as soon as we can, but when a player has got the symptoms that he’s had, it puts it back another week. He is just not feeling quite right. We put him under some physical exposure, and he’s just not feeling 100 per-cent. We have specialists here, and it is symptomatic of concussion. It is one of those things you have to deal with.”
He went on to say that it is essential to trust the specialists and the process as it is not worth ever putting a player in danger. He is hopeful that Underhill will make a full return but stressed that player safety is the number one priority.
“Even for the players it can create an anxiety for them. They have to think about their careers and what happens if it all finishes now.”
Underhill sustained his first concussion during the club’s Premiership game against Northampton in September.
Meanwhile, Blackadder said that Taulupe Faletau does not need surgery to fix a knee injury picked up against Toulon in France last weekend. He added, “It doesn’t need surgical intervention, which is a real positive. That cuts it back by about a month. We are looking at about 12 weeks.”