The second international line of Clermont Sébastien Vahaamahina will have to end his career after a new concussion, he said in an interview with L’Equipe, where he criticizes the Auvergne club for not assuming its responsibilities.
Vahaamahina (31, 46 caps) has not played with Clermont since December 10, 2022 and a match against the South African Stormers franchise (24-14), in the Champions Cup.
“In six years, this is the tenth (concussion) on record. There have been others, but they apparently weren’t recorded in my medical file. I have symptoms that get worse and worse after each concussion, with an impact on my life as a professional rugby player but also on my private life”, confided Vahaamahina to L’Equipe, recounting his “headaches”, his “dizziness”, his “fatigue” …
“A week later, I wanted to come to the stadium driving alone. Result: I fell asleep in the parking lot when I arrived, so exhausted I was from having driven not even fifteen minutes. We also had to postpone my nose operation. because anesthesia was not advised in my condition,” he continued.
After two operations, the former Brive and Perpignan player, who arrived at Marcel-Michelin in 2014, has “resumed an almost normal life”, but continues to live with “a sharp sword above his head”.
“Five months have passed and they (the leaders of Clermont, editor’s note) could have made me a decent and clear proposal to end my story with the club properly. If they haven’t done it, it’s because they don’t don’t want to do it. The club continues to buy time and hope that I give up. I thought I deserved more respect. I’m disappointed and hurt,” said the second row.
“I understood that the ASM surely had other things to do than take care of its old soldiers,” he added.
During the week, club and player received a letter from the FFR, indicating the withdrawal of Vahaamahina’s license “following a letter from the ASM doctor and a recommendation from the medical commission before which I did not never been summoned”, according to the native of Nouméa who explains that he has not received any prior information.
“I’m ashamed for my club as my dismissal for unsuitability is in progress. I’m having a lot of trouble setting foot in the stadium. I told the managers that they ruined everything, as if they had everything erased. I was programmed to play, to give everything and perform,” he says.
“They had to and must protect us. The players have duties but also rights. They are in a hurry to finish me. All this is unfair. They do not assume. We are like cars for them. And when we is screwed, we leave for the breakage”, still says Vahaamahina, estimating that “on several occasions, the periods of rest after concussions were not respected”.
He is the third ASM player to denounce the attitude of the Auvergne club, after second line Jamie Cudmore and third line Alexandre Lapandry, who filed a complaint against the club for “endangering the lives of others” .