Ospreys v Blues derby outing for concussion gum shield technology

George North and Tomos Williams
Ospreys were 20-11 winners over Cardiff Blues in the Pro14 derby

Concussion has become a hot topic in rugby union, with more awareness and safety protocols than ever before.

Wales full-back Leigh Halfpenny has not played in eight weeks after suffering the after effects from a late hit against Australia.

Now a new technology fitted to a player's gum shield allows head impact data to be transmitted immediately to medical staff on the sidelines.

It was used in Saturday's Pro14 game between Ospreys and Cardiff Blues.

Concussion gumshields

Swansea-based company Sport and Wellbeing Analytics and researchers at Swansea University have been working on the PROTECHT system for two years and Ospreys have been using it in competitive games since October 2018.

But the derby at the Liberty Stadium was the first time it was worn by two opposing teams.

"If the players are being managed in a better fashion, with a long-term view, that can only be good news for them and for us," said Ospreys managing director Andrew Millward.

"The benefit of this system is it provides real time data, assessing impacts that may otherwise have escaped people's attention, enabling the medical teams to react and manage accordingly, helping to create a safer environment."

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