New Zealand Breakers forward Akil Mitchell suffered a horrific eye injury on court during a game against Cairns Taipans, which resulted in his eyeball briefly popping out of its socket.
After an accidental clash with an opponent, whose finger managed to dislodge the eyeball, Mitchell was taken off the court and quickly had his eyeball slid back in without any trouble.
The medical team were on hand swiftly to ensure the Breakers attacker could go off for treatment, and it now seems as though he’ll fully regain his sight despite the disturbing nature of the incident.
The 24-year-old was in good spirits afterwards, telling New Zealand radio: ‘I could still see out of the eye.
‘I remember thinking oh man… this is kinda bad, but I actually felt it kind of out of place and that’s when I kind of freaked out a little bit.
👀… too soon? Lol thanks for all the love, well wishes, and prayers tonight. I'm home and seeing fine, more tests tomorrow
— akil mitchell (@ajmitchell25) January 26, 2017
‘Once I got in the ambulance they gave me a little pain medicine and some saline drops in my eye and I felt it slide back into place, which is also a really strange feeling.
Mitchell even tweeted about it with good humour, saying he’s seeing fine at the moment as he prepares for more tests.
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Breakers General Manager Dillon Boucher believes it is a miracle Mitchell has recovered so well and says it’s one of the worst injuries he’s seen in the sport.
‘After seeing it last night I thought there had to be some damage and for him to be pulling out of it the way he is right now, it’s just remarkable. Certainly all signs are very positive,’ he said.
‘He’s at a specialist as we speak, but unless they tell him something different to what he heard last night, it’s all looking very positive.
‘It’s just amazing after seeing how horrific it was, how quickly he can recover, and how the human body can sort itself out on its own.
‘It’s certainly the most graphic thing I’ve ever seen on a basketball court.’
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