INJURED PLAYER: Samartha Leisha playing for Highlanders in the womens grand final at the Warba Wangarunya Rugby League Carnival in Rockhampton.
INJURED PLAYER: Samartha Leisha playing for Highlanders in the womens grand final at the Warba Wangarunya Rugby League Carnival in Rockhampton. Chris Ison ROK160417cwomenleague

Club rallies behind injured star player

RUGBY LEAGUE: The Emu Park Rugby League Club is rallying around one of its seniors, Indigenous All Stars and state representative league player, Samartha Leisha, who was seriously injured in a match last weekend.

The mum of five was playing in a match against Norths Chargers when she sustained a fractured vertebrae in a tackle within the first few minutes.

"It was just a tackle and it just went wrong," Emu Park women's coach and club president Jason Field said.

"Unfortunately her jersey was pulled over her head and her head was in the wrong position.

"When her head came down, the pressure caused injury."

Leisha is currently at Woorabinda hospital, awaiting a specialist from Brisbane to determine whether she was need surgery on her back.

"She wanted her children close to her and her family is out there, so they are supporting her children at this point in time," Field said.

"She won't be back playing footy for a long time, if again.

"It's a significant injury so there will be a long recovery in relation to medical expenses and physio.

"We are just happy she's able to walk at this point and we hope she mends well and doesn't have the pain she's been going through at this point in time."

Leisha has done a lot for women's rugby league.

Samartha Leisha was player of the carnival at the recent Warba Wangarunya Rugby League Carnival.
Samartha Leisha was player of the carnival at the recent Warba Wangarunya Rugby League Carnival. CONTRIBUTED

As well as playing representative football, she is an ambassador and has publicly promoted the importance of Women in League through an NRL campaign in 2017.

"Samartha is a leader," Field said.

"She's a mother to all those young girls coming through and playing. She's very supportive and is always willing to help anyone going through trouble.

"She's done that since I met her six or seven years ago.

"She's very sensible and is just a lovely person who just gives all the time."

Emu Park Rugby League Club treasurer Leanne Field-Hamson created a Go Fund Me page for Leisha on Monday with a goal of $5000.

At 10am Tuesday, $665 has been raised.

"We're just hoping to support her at this period of time," Field said.

"Unfortunately her vehicle was stolen the week she moved to the area. She just got a full time job and had been working with five children.

"That will be really difficult with an injury and being off work.

"We want to help her get through and with any recovery and physio required."

Emu Park Women's will be holding a barbecue and raffle at 'Festival of the Wind' on April 14, with all proceeds going towards Leisha's recovery.

Norths Knights will also have donation tins at their home game next weekend.

Donate to Samartha's recovery

https://www.gofundme.com/samartha-leisha-medical-expenses-and-recovery



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