Leicester Tigers player Taylor Gough has suffered “severe spinal injuries” in a major car accident, with the Premiership Club joining up with The Matt Hampson Foundation to raise funds and provide support for the 20-year-old.
Leicester have said that Gough is “suffering from paralysis and is unable to move his legs” after being involved in a car crash in mid-June, and he remains in intensive care at Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham.
The forward suffered “multiple injuries” in the accident, which has left those at the Welford Road club saddened by the news and deeply concerned for his well being.
As a result, they are looking to raise funds for Gough’s treatment, and have joined up with Matt Hampson’s Foundation that looks to support injured players and their families at what are very difficult times.
“We were all very sad to receive the news and, since finding out, everyone at Tigers has had Taylor in their thoughts,” said Leicester chairman Peter Tom.
“We have remained in daily contact with his family and will continue to support Taylor and them through this situation.
“He is a popular member of our squad and Taylor is one of us. And at Tigers, we look after our own.
“I have no doubt the Tigers community, rugby community and Leicester community will rally around him and his family as they navigate this tough time.”
Hampson, known warmly as ‘Hambo’, launched his Foundation after suffering a spinal injury during a scrummaging accident in training that left him paralysed from the neck down and needing to breathe with the aid of a ventilator. The former England age grade international has gone on to work with the RFU’s Injured Players Fund as well as the Restart charity, and having been part of the Leicester Tigers squad for a number of years before his injury, Gough’s accident has additional meaning for both Hampson and the club.
“The rugby family looked after me and I know you will do the same for Taylor Gough,” Hampson said. “The Foundation are here for both you and your family mate so stay strong and I’ll speak to you soon.”
A Just Giving page has already generated more than £15,000 to aid Gough’s treatment and recovery, with Gough’s teammates also rallying behind the campaign to support him and his family.
England prop Ellis Genge helped to raise awareness of the fund by sharing it on Twitter, adding: “One of our Acad boys had a car crash last month, this is his just giving page for private spinal rehab. Kid’s a f****** legend if you got a few quid *spare* in these tough times, all of us from the club would appreciate the help.”
Former Bath, Wasps and Dragons forward Ed Jackson had his career ended in 2017 by a spinal injury, and the former player-turned-rugby presenter joined calls to try and help raise money for Gough.
“Time for the rugby family to pull together again for one of its own,” Jackson said on Twitter. “Please help Taylor and his family through this difficult time. Believe me I know how much difference that support makes."
Gough has made one senior appearance for Leicester after coming on as a replacement in the Premiership Cup in January 2019, and has also represented the club in Sevens.
Gough's Just Giving page can be found here.