Quarterback plays through a broken neck to help team win title

An Australian quarterback was recovering Thursday after playing on with a broken neck during his side's title win in a local gridiron competition.

Eastside Razorbacks player Josh Welbourn said the injury occurred during the deciding game of the South Australian competition against the Adelaide Eagles last month, when he fumbled the ball and went to recover it, and a number of players piled on top of him.

The 29-year-old was sidelined for a short time before dismissing the pain as a shoulder injury and returning to the field, local paper the City North Messenger reported.

The Razorbacks went on to win, but Welbourn left the celebrations early because the pain persisted.

He checked himself into the hospital two days later, with X-rays revealing he had played half the game with a broken neck.

"I went in for a checkup and next minute I was transferred to the trauma room, strapped to the table and immobilized for a few days," he said.

"Now I'm in a neck brace and looking at three months to recover properly. But we won."

Welbourn said he hoped to make a full recovery and help defend the title next season.

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