Australia def Denmark, Sam Kerr returns from injury, news, reaction, video, is she hurt, will she play next game – TOTOCC

Australian captain Sam Kerr has finally taken to the field for the first time this World Cup, coming off the bench in the 80th minute of Australia’s 2-0 win over Denmark on Monday night that booked a place in the quarterfinals.

It ends weeks of speculation over her fitness that has seen Kerr’s left calf become the most talked-about muscle in the country.

There were promising signs in her brief stint on the field, though there was a moment of high drama when she slipped on the greasy turf and tumbled to the ground with an apparent groin concern.

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Kerr said afterwards: “I just slipped. I have terrible groins and just fell over like a normal thing. I think it’s just on a microscope because I’ve been injured the last three weeks. But it’s nothing.”

It had a tense coach Tony Gustavsson gesturing wildly in her direction – though he said post-game that Kerr told him she was fine to play on.

In his post-match press conference, the Swede was asked to explain his feelings when Kerr went down – and to do so without swearing.

After a burst of laughter, he said: “I know I can tend to swear too much at times when I get passionate, but today I’ll try to stay away from that.

“I got very nervous. I didn’t see the slip until she was on the floor. But when I saw that obviously you go: ‘Oh!’

“And then straight away communicate with her: ‘How are you doing, you need to come off? You good?’

“She wanted to stay on so hopefully that means she’s okay.”

Kerr has been on a strict training plan since suffering the injury two days before the tournament began. And she revealed after the game that the physios were so intent on ensuring her recovery was pitch-perfect that she was banned from any warm-down runs after the match!

“I don’t even know when it is,” she said when asked about Australia’s next game. “I have a plan, the physios have a plan – I asked them if I could run after and they said no!

“So I’m sure I’ll be following their plan like I have the past few weeks.”

Kerr hit the ground in one scary moment.
Kerr hit the ground in one scary moment.Source: Getty Images

Meanwhile, Australia was visibly buoyed by the return of the talismanic captain to the pitch.

Veteran teammate Emily van Egmond laughed as she said: “She didn’t miss a beat, did she?”

“I’m honestly so happy and proud to have her back as a teammate and a friend of mine. I couldn’t be happier for her.

“We need her. She’s our leader. She’s a weapon. She’s an absolute game changer. And like I said before to add that to the arsenal we already have, I think we’re scary moving forward.”

Mary Fowler said: “It was great to see her. Even just hearing the crowd hyping her up when she was warming up, it’s amazing to see and you just can’t help but smile.

“It’s really big for us. Sam’s an amazing player. She’s loved by everyone in the team and by this country. It’s massive for us that she’s finally back out there.”

But Kerr’s teammates are also happy that the media frenzy surrounding her injury saga finally appears to be over.

Goalscorer Caitlin Foord said: “It won’t be much of a headache anymore! I’m pretty tired of it to be honest. You can ask her now how she enjoyed that.”


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