‘I gave him a slap but he just kept on choking’ – Ellis Genge on his Six Nations medical intervention

Ellis Genge has revealed how his quick thinking helped prevent a medical emergency for Italy forward Sebastian Negri in Rome on Sunday.

egri, who had only just come on as a replacement, was knocked unconscious in the 54th minute after a collision with opposing forward Nick Isiekwe. While Isiekwe and other England players celebrated the dominant collision, Genge was alert enough to hear a choking sound coming from Negri.

Genge immediately called for medical attention and attempted to roll Negri into the recovery position.

“I heard him choking, so I gave him a slap to see if he reacted,” Genge said. “He just carried on choking, so I didn’t know if he had swallowed his tongue – that’s why I tried to roll him on to his side.

“I’m not a master in medicine, but I’m pretty sure you are supposed to put them in the recovery position, so I tried to do that. I was quickly ushered away by the medics, so I let them just carry on.”

The game was stopped for several minutes while Negri was treated before the 27-year-old was taken off on a medical buggy.

Yesterday Negri sent a message to Genge, a fellow product of Hartpury College, saying: “Thank you so much, appreciate all you did. You are a top man. All good this side and feeling a lot better.”

An update from the Italian medical team indicated that Negri was on course to make a full recovery. “It’s horrible when that happens,” Genge said. “I don’t know Seb very well, but a lot of my friends played at Hartpury with him and apparently he’s a lovely bloke.

“It wasn’t nice to see. He’d just come on and he’s a big player for them, and for that to happen wasn’t nice to see. I hope he’s well.

“When you are on the pitch, you think rugby is the be-all and end-all, but you are definitely brought back down to earth quickly and realise reality when something like that happens.”

Telegraph Media Group Limited [2021]

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