Blues co-captain in ICU, in doubt for game two after throat injury

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Sky Blues co-captain Isabelle Kelly has been cleared of a larynx fracture but remains in the intensive care unit at Westmead hospital after suffering a throat injury in last night’s Origin game.

Kelly took a forearm to the throat from Queenslander Julia Robinson in the first half of Thursday night’s game, which the Sky Blues lost 18-10 to the Maroons.

In a statement on Friday morning, NSW Rugby League said Kelly had been cleared of any serious damage.

“Tests have shown Kelly does not have a fracture to her larynx or windpipe damage. She is breathing more freely but still has swelling to the throat so she will remain in Westmead Hospital as a precautionary measure,” the statement read.

At this stage, it’s too early to tell if Kelly will be available for selection for game two in Townsville on June 22.

In a story posted to her instagram on Friday morning, Kelly reassured fans she was OK, but remained in the ICU.

Isabelle Kelly leaves the field after suffering a throat injury.Credit: Getty

“Feeling very overwhelmed with all the love I have received, thank you to all who have contacted myself or my family,” Kelly wrote.

“Still in ICU at hospital surrounded by the most amazing staff at Westmead, been a scary 12 hours but hopefully head home tomorrow.”

Sky Blues coach Kylie Hilder was extremely critical of the decision not to pause play after Kelly dropped to the pitch clutching her throat.

“That’s a big concern [referee not pausing play] for me when we’ve got a player on the ground in discomfort and not in a great way, and she was struggling to breathe,” Hilder said at the post-game press conference.

“So, it’s a very big concern, and I am very worried and concerned about her now. And I still don’t understand why there wasn’t even a penalty for that — she was hit in the throat.”

The injury to Kelly rattled the team, and the Blues didn’t look like the same team in the second half after seeing their co-captain being taken away in an ambulance.

Winger Jaime Chapman was similarly confused the whistle wasn’t blown, but said the side rallied for their captain.

“That was horrible. To see Issy down and in pain, you know, she’s a tough girl, and she doesn’t just go down for no reason,” Chapman said.

“So when I saw her down I thought something was definitely wrong … it’s sad to see our captain go down, but we were doing it for her…we instantly said, let’s do it for Issy, let’s do it for our captain, let’s do it for our leader.”

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