Polak in coma after being hit by tram - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Polak in coma after being hit by tram

29/06/2008 01:12:08 PM Comments (0)

Doctors hope to bring Richmond's Graham Polak out of an induced coma after he was hit and badly injured by a tram in Melbourne.

The accident last night left the AFL defender with bruising on the brain and a spokesperson for The Alfred hospital said Polak's condition was critical, but stable.

Polak, 24, was crossing the intersection of Orrong and Dandenong roads at Armadale around 11pm (AEST) when he was struck.

While his condition has improved, Richmond club doctor Greg Hickey said Polak would be in hospital "for some time".

Team-mates Cleve Hughes and Jordan McMahon were with Polak at the time of the accident.

Hickey said Polak's condition had improved overnight and he was trying to move his limbs.

"The latest scan, which was done not that long ago, show there hasn't been any significant change in the situation," Hickey said.

He said there had been no extra swelling, which was an encouraging sign. Dr Hickey earlier said Polak had swelling on the brain.

"Initially, they were planing to keep him in an induced coma for two to three days," he said.

"Now the hope is they will be weaning things off this morning, and hopefully he will wake up ... and we will have a clearer picture of where he's at.

"Things are a bit more positive now than they were a few hours ago."

Polak's parents are travelling from Perth to be with their son, while his partner Alycle and Richmond team-mates were told last night of the accident.

Although Polak's condition is improving, he will not play again this season and his AFL career is in doubt.

"In terms of footy, it is unquestionable. He won't play this season - longer term beyond that, we'll just have to wait and see," Hickey said.

"He's certainly been moving all his limbs, which is a good sign.

"It's not like there are signs he is paralysed in any of his limbs. Probably the hardest thing to gauge at this stage is more his intellectual recovery, whether he will regain that - time will tell."

Richmond football manager Greg Miller said it was unclear if alcohol played a role in the accident.

"I'm unaware of that, it's not a concern for us at the moment," he said.

Polak has played 11 games for Richmond this season for a career total of 106 and was part of the team that lost to Carlton yesterday at the MCG.

Tiger veteran Matthew Richardson said: "It's a shock, but I don't know any details at this stage".

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