Gold medal field hockey player retires due to injuries sustained while laughing at a joke

USATSI

An Olympic gold medalist for Great Britain's field hockey team announced that she was retiring from the sport on Thursday due to lingering effects from a brain injury she suffered while on vacation in Kenya. Alex Danson-Bennett reportedly threw her head back to laugh at a joke from her now-husband and hit her head against a brick wall.

The leading goal-scorer at the Rio and London Games said her head injury changed her life "in terms of my perspective and things that have happened within my family." The decision clearly was not an easy one to make, adding that field hockey "has been my life."

After the incident, Danson-Bennett had to spend 24 hours a day in bed for a few months. During that time, she apparently struggled to walk to the bathroom, and had issues with almost all of her senses.

"I couldn't bear light, sound, touch, anything," she said in an interview with the BBC. "It was almost like my sensory dials had been whacked up. Even holding a conversation, I'd have to talk very slowly."

Despite making changes in her life to try and return to the national team, and being told she would fully recover from this accident, Danson-Bennett had to call it a career after 18 years.

She finished an illustrious career with Team GB that included 306 caps and 115 goals to go along with a bronze medal from the 2012 Olympics in London and a gold medal from the 2016 games in Rio.

Our Latest Stories