2019 was a rollercoaster for Wasps scrum-half Dan Robson. In March of that year, Robson made his England debut vs Italy appearing off the bench and scoring in the Six Nations. A dream-like reality.
However, in the week that followed Robson would be hit by a set back no one expected. After being named in the squad to face Scotland in place of injured Danny Care, blood clots were discovered and he was later diagnosed with deep vein thrombosis.
Deep vein thrombosis is a blood clot in a deep vein usually in the leg. It can cause pain and swelling and potentially lead to Pulmonary embolism can stop blood flow to certain areas of the body which can be life-threatening.
Robson was out for three months from April, which saw him miss out on England’s Rugby World Cup campaign in Japan. Other sports stars such as tennis star Serena Williams and Nascar driver Brian Vickers have both suffered from the same disease.
In 2020, Dan Robson is now helping to lead Wasps in the 2019/20 Premiership.
One year on, it is incredible that he is able to play rugby again.
Dan Robson feels ‘very lucky’ to still be here
Last Monday saw Eddie Jones announce his Six Nations squad with the Australian favouring World Cup pairing of Ben Youngs and Willi Heinz as his scrum-half options.
Robson has been getting back to the form he was in prior to his setback. On Saturday, he co-captained his side to victory over Worcester Warriors, scoring a try to help his side secure the bonus point.
The 27-year-old believes that he still has some way to go before he gets another England call-up. “It’s getting better. Still got stuff to work on but I’m just enjoying playing, enjoying challenging.
Charlie Hynes spoke to Robson after the match, and the player commented that “I’m not quite at my best, I’m the first one to hold my hand up with that. I’m just enjoying just getting out there and giving my all and taking it week-by-week and learning from each game and trying to get better. Today was another step in the right direction.”
When questioned about missing out on Jones’ recent squad, Robson said that he won’t take it to heart considering the journey he has been on, saying:
“I’ve spoken very publicly, I feel very lucky and privileged that I’m sitting here today and being able to play professional rugby.”
“I’ve spoken to a lot of people recently that have come through things like that and not been able to carry on playing so I’ve definitely not got any grudges or disappointment anymore. It’s all about looking to the future and that’s just taking every game as it comes and push up the table,” said the Englishman
Wasps number 9 has Dai Young’s vote
Wasps Director of Rugby Dai Young has been with Robson throughout this journey and praised his scrum half’s approach to this season even though Wasps have struggled, saying:
“Dan’s worked hard at his game. It’s not a great position to play when the team isn’t playing well. Early doors when things weren’t quite clicking for us everyone was looking at him to do something.
“The reality is he’s just kept working at his game and I thought some of the stuff he did today was top drawer. Great to see him on peoples shoulders as well cause that’s where he makes his name,”
The Welshman continued: “He kicked well, tackled well, made lots of tackles in the lines so I see Dan just going from strength to strength. He’s had this disappointment before but he’ll just keep battling.
“All he can do is keep working hard and at some point he’ll get a crack and put his best foot forward.”
Young firmly believes Dan Robson has the ability to offer something different for England. Robson has time on his side compared to Youngs and Heinz and Young believes his time will come. Robson has spoken to Jones and is very much in the picture. “I know Dan has spoken to Eddie, obviously that conversation stays between them.
“They’re all quality players in England, he can’t pick anyone otherwise it’d be hell of a squad. I think Eddie’s given him one or two things he’d like him to improve on and he knows that and is working hard to do it.”
Young feels a big factor in the selection has been the form of his side, saying: “If the teams winning games, getting on the front foot and scoring tries it can only make it easier for Dan’s game. He’s been here before, he’s an unbelievable professional. He’ll be disappointed, he’ll take it on the chin, keep working at it and battle to get his opportunity.”
Wasps currently sit 9th in the Premiership. With the extra effort that players like Dan Robson hope to put it, the Coventry-based side can step up to that pivotal playoff level, where individuals can display their character.
One element, that Robson has clearly displayed in his fightback from illness.
“Main photo credit”
Embed from Getty Images