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Aussie Sports World Rocked: 2 Pro Athletes Are Hospitalized After COVID Jab - Report

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Two Australian athletes reportedly were hospitalized in recent days after receiving COVID-19 vaccines.

On Friday, former NBL Australia basketball player Ben Madgen said in a tweet he had been hospitalized with pericarditis after receiving his second dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.

“Ended up in the emergency room on Wednesday night after taking the 2nd Pfizer shot,” he wrote. “Diagnosed with Pericarditis. The Dr. said this is now common after the Pfizer shot, especially with teenage boys and young males.”

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According to the Mayo Clinic, pericarditis is a condition defined by “swelling and irritation of the thin, saclike tissue surrounding your heart.” Symptoms can include chest pain, coughing, localized swelling and shortness of breath.

Madgen played five seasons in the NBL between 2011 and 2020, according to Basketball Reference. He averaged 14.8 points, 3.7 rebounds and 2.1 assists per game during his NBL career.

One day before Madgen’s tweet, sports reporter Stephen Rowe said a member of the Adelaide Crows, an Australian rules football team, was hospitalized after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine. The individual was a top-up player for the Crows, which is essentially a minor league affiliate to the senior team.

“A Crows top-up player two weeks ago got his first COVID jab, and he needed to do that to train obviously, because the top-ups train with the senior boys at times,” Rowe said on “Rowey’s Sports Show.”

“So in short, he presented symptoms to the club doctor, who acted immediately … After testing, [he] was diagnosed with periocarditis.”

Rowe said the player was hospitalized for a day and is expected to make a full recovery. However, he reportedly was instructed not to exercise for three months.

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Later in the show, Rowe recounted the story of his 24-year-old niece, who he said was hospitalized for three days after receiving the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine.

He said while he is still personally in favor of vaccinations, he is “starting to swing” away from his initial support of vaccine mandates.

The Australian Football League, of which the Crows are a member, required all players and staff to receive the first dose of COVID-19 vaccine by Nov. 19, the Australian Associated Press reported.

Should sports leagues mandate COVID-19 vaccines?

One member of the Crows has been ousted because of the mandate. According to the AAP, Crows director Nick Takos resigned from his position Tuesday after his request for a medical exemption from the vaccine was denied.

“The AFL’s COVID mandate, and the club’s deeply concerning response to it, has left me with no choice but to step down,” Takos said in a statement Wednesday, according to the AAP.

“While I am not anti-vaccination generally, corporations should not tell their staff and footy fans what medical treatment is good for them through a mandatory vaccination policy,” he said. “I cannot support a coercive and forceful policy that does not consider the proportionate risk to players and staff.”

In November, Deni Varnhagen, who plays for the Adelaide Crows’ women’s team, was moved to the inactive roster after refusing to get vaccinated, The Guardian reported.

Varnhagen also serves as an ICU nurse, and she said she did not want to put the vaccine into her body because she felt it was a “medical experiment.”

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Grant is a graduate of Virginia Tech with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. He has five years of writing experience with various outlets and enjoys covering politics and sports.
Grant is a graduate of Virginia Tech with a bachelor's degree in journalism. He has five years of writing experience with various outlets and enjoys covering politics and sports.




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