Leeds Rhinos: Ben aiming for a swift return

Ben Jones-Bishop
Ben Jones-Bishop
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Leeds Rhinos flier Ben Jones-Bishop is looking to make a rapid return to action after being knocked cold during the recent win over Wakefield Trinity Wildcats.

Jones-Bishop received lengthy treatment on the field by medical staff from both clubs before being carried off on a stretcher and then taken to hospital for a check over.

The incident four days ago came just weeks after Newcastle Knights player Alex McKinnon suffered “life-changing” spinal injuries in a game in Australia.

The crowd at Headingley Carnegie Stadium fell silent as Jones-Bishop received medical care and he was applauded from the field by fans and players.

He said: “I’m good. Obviously it was a pretty big impact and I had a pretty rough weekend, but I am feeling a lot better now.

“I can just remember being picked up and expecting it to hurt. I woke up in the doctor’s room strapped to a spiral board.

“It was one of those things, I have watched it back and I don’t think there’s any malice in the tackle.

“It is quite a firm ground and I took all the impact on the back of my head.”

Jones-Bishop suffered a fractured skull in a game during a loan spell at Harlequins in 2010.

But he said: “It was totally different. That was to the front of my head and Friday was the impact to the back of my head more than anything.

“There’s no real concern, but there’s a protocol I have to go through now.

“It’s a case of going through that and then seeing if I am ready and available for Thursday’s game at Bradford.”

Jones-Bishop paid tribute to the medics from both clubs who looked after him on the field and afterwards.

“The treatment you get, here or at any other club, is second to none,” he said.

“It is a dangerous sport and things can go wrong, so it’s important you have people clued up and on the ball.

“I have heard a few stories – apparently I was wrestling with the doc when he was trying to put the oxygen mask on me. But I am very grateful to have the people we do in our game.”

Jones-Bishop insisted the incident won’t be at the back of his mind the next time he takes to the field.

“I suppose it could have an impact on you, but I don’t think so,” he said.

“It is a contact sport and stepping on to the pitch you don’t expect anything serious to happen to you, but you know you are going to get bumps, bruises and

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whatnot. It’s just a case of cracking on with it, doing what I can, getting looked after properly and making sure I recover properly, so when I am back on the field I can do my job again.”

Friday’s 42-6 win was only Jones-Bishop’s third game of the year and his first in his favoured full-back role, after Zak Hardaker was rested.

He said: “It’s a bit unlucky, but I got a good half an hour under my belt. I would have liked a full game, but I was happy to play and now I want to make sure I am back as quick as possible and hopefully I can get in the team for the games coming up.”

Jones-Bishop thanked fans who sent messages of support after his injury, saying: “Obviously a lot of people were worried.

“It looked quite bad, the way I went down and didn’t move. I am grateful for all the messages and I want to say thank you to anyone who has been in touch via social media and things like that.”

Meanwhile, the RFL have cleared Wildcats’ ex-Leeds hooker Paul McShane of any blame for Jones-Bishop’s injury.

The incident was studied by the governing body’s match review panel, which concluded McShane should not be charged with any offence.

The panel’s ruling stated: “Player does lift opponent’s legs however player lands on back.”

Tom Briscoe.

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