Gold Coast Suns veteran, Gary Ablett, yesterday unveiled new plans for a ‘leather poisoning’ clinic in Melbourne’s northern suburbs after announcing that he’s sick of misdiagnosis and mistreatment.
Ablett, who is averaging a tick over 30 touches this season and for the good part of a decade has been getting too much of the footy, says the new clinic prides itself on accepting the fact that leather poisoning is a serious condition requiring specialist treatment and resources.
“Overall there’s a lack of support and awareness on the issue — something affecting a countless number of talented footballers around Australia,” Ablett said.
“There needs to be a centre for people like myself, Murph, Danger, Tom Mitchell — the list goes on — where we can talk about what it’s like to get so much of the footy.”
Geelong Cats midfielder, Patrick Dangerfield, says last season he battled through the condition with very little support.
“I felt very alone to be honest,” Dangerfield said.
“Besides Joel, the next best bloke at the Cats was averaging almost 10 disposals less than me — I just felt like no one could really relate to what I was going through.”
Dangerfield admits that at times he would just erupt — reminding younger blokes how good he really is.
“Part of the problem is that I know I’m an absolute gun,” he said.
“So I’m very excited to be able to go to a place where other leather poisoning sufferers can come together to discuss the stigma that’s often associated with the condition.
“I’m also hoping I can remove some of this weight off my shoulders from carrying the team.”
Ablett says the clinic will be open to all victims, not just players from the AFL.
“We need to ensure that as a footballing community, we give talented youngsters who rack up bulk possessions a place to comfortably brag and talk about their performances — with the peace of mind that they won’t be hurt in the process,” he said.
“The clinic will be free of taggers and protect victims from wet conditions.”
Featured Image: ABC | Rept0n1x (edited)