St Kilda Football Club defender Dylan Roberton has been ruled for the remainder of the AFL season while he undergoes further testing and monitoring of his heart following a scary collapse in Geelong a few weeks ago.
Roberton collapsed behind play on April 16th at Kardinia Park in Geelong on April 16th, a scene which played out in particularly frightening fashion given he was completely clear of any other player on the field at the time.
A warning that the footage of the collapse is quite confronting.
Roberton recovered on the spot and was able to leave the ground of his own accord, but spent overnight in hospital as doctors monitored his condition, determining that the collapse was the result of an irregular heartbeat.
At the time it was unknown how long Roberton would be out of the game for, but today the Saints confirmed the 26-year-old will not return at any point this season, leaving his playing career beyond that in severe doubt.
The young Saint has had a device implanted in him that will monitor his heart’s rhythm and electrical activity over the next three months as doctors try to determine the cause of his irregular heartbeat. During that time he is only permitted to undertake light exercise, hence today’s decision to rule him out for the year.
A stoic Roberton fronted media earlier this afternoon and explained that, while he’s disappointed to not be out there playing, the episode has allowed him to put things in perspective.
There’s a rhythm problem going on in my heart on the electrical side of things, we’re still not sure why it happens, so I’ll still be out for the meantime. I probably won’t be back again this year but I am hoping at the end of this three months to get back to exercising and hopefully finish off the year back training with the boys.”
[The device doctors implanted is] sort of like the size of a battery, just in my chest. It just feeds in what my heart is doing to the doctors and all their computers so they’ll be able to pick up what’s happening. With the testing, they’ll be able to put all that information together and make a decision going forward.
Footy means a lot to me but obviously being healthy and being there for my kids is the most important thing.
Roberton will assist St Kilda’s coaching panel during his recovery.
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Image: Getty Images / Adam Trafford