Awareness of the long-term danger of playing certain sports where head bumps are common now extends to Australian rules football. Like former rugby players before him, in particular, Max Rooke, former star of this king sport in Australia, launched Tuesday a "historic" class action lawsuit against the National League (AFL) for concussions suffered according to him while he played. More than 60 former players have come forward to join.
Max Rooke, now 41, played 135 games for Geelong before retiring in 2010. He was one of the best-known players in the sport of rugby, football, volleyball and handball, whose championship final is usually played in front of more than 100,000 spectators each year in Melbourne. Rooke has filed a class action lawsuit in Victoria's Supreme Court in Melbourne, alleging he suffered "life-altering permanent concussion-related injuries due to the AFL's negligence," his lawyer, Michel Margalit, said in a statement.
The AFL is facing a landmark concussion lawsuit. Former Geelong star Max Rooke is leading the class action against, which involves dozens of former players. To discuss, @mikeamor7 spoke with Michel Margalit from Margalit Injury Lawyers. https://t.co/5zYfOfGqUb #7NEWS pic.twitter.com/PlQXszRCoF
— 7NEWS Melbourne (@7NewsMelbourne) March 14, 2023
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Former players are said to suffer long-term injuries, including neurological disorders such as traumatic brain injuries and dementia. "The injuries suffered by this group of former AFL players have had a devastating impact on their lives and the lives of their loved ones," said Michel Margalit. Some of the players who joined this historic class action were never able to keep a job after leaving the AFL. »
The lawyer added that a similar class action lawsuit filed in the United States by former NFL football players resulted in an upfront payment of more than a billion dollars. There is also a similar lawsuit underway in rugby, with 275 former players seeking compensation for brain damage, including Steve Thompson, the 2003 World Cup winner with England, and Ryan Jones, former Wales captain.