Warburton 'devastated' by Owen Williams injury
ESPN Staff
June 26, 2014
The <I>Western Mail</I> front page after the extent of Owen Williams' injury became known, June 26, 2014
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Players/Officials: Owen Williams
Teams: Wales

Sam Warburton has spoken of a "devastated" feeling after the full extent of an injury suffered by his Wales and Cardiff Blues colleague Owen Williams became known.

The rugby world has united behind centre Williams, who suffered "significant injury" to his neck during a tournament in Singapore. Williams, 22, was hurt while playing for the Blues in the inaugural World Club 10s last weekend.

His parents and brother are at his bedside in a Singapore hospital, where he underwent an operation three days ago.

"Everyone is devastated," Wales captain Warburton said."The training ground was not a very nice place to be on Monday when we found out. It was horrible because Owen is someone who I have been training with every day for the last four years.

"Physically, he was a specimen and an amazing athlete. We have our fingers crossed, and all the boys have sent personal messages already to his family out in Singapore. Hopefully, he knows all of our thoughts are with him."

Reflecting on the incident, which took place during the third and fourth place play-off game between the Blues and Asia Pacific Dragons at Singapore National Stadium, Warburton said: "It's scary because it is not like it was a malicious tip-tackle or anything like that. It was a freak accident, and as a player it does make you wonder about prioritising the important things in life.

"It does worry you when it comes to playing rugby, but I am sure everyone is going through similar emotions."

In a statement, the Blues said: "Cardiff Blues have confirmed that Owen Williams has suffered a significant injury to his cervical vertebrae and spinal cord. He underwent an operation on Monday to stabilise a fracture and is currently recovering in hospital in Singapore.

"The family of Owen Williams are now at his bedside, along with senior Blues management and medical staff. Arrangements are currently being made to co-ordinate his safe transfer home at an appropriate time."

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