Kallum Watkins’ injury-defying effort for Salford revealed as bravery is saluted

KALLUM Watkins played 40 minutes of rugby league with a ruptured knee ligament, Salford coach Richard Marshall has revealed.

And his frank admission that he once contemplated taking his own life is a mark of the man.

Kallum Watkins played 40 minutes against Warrington with a ruptured knee ligament

The former England centre faces up to three months out after suffering the problem in the Red Devils’ last game against Warrington.

But boss Marshall revealed how the 30-year-old played through the pain for a full half of action.

He said: “Kallum played on with a ruptured medial ligament, which is ridiculous. What a tough competitor he is to play for 40 minutes with no medial ligament.

“That’s getting repaired but what a warrior for us Kallum is.

“Gareth Widdop made a tackle and Kallum just got his knee in the wrong place. These things happen in a game but he played on and was at the top of our stats against Warrington.”

Watkins has revealed he once considered taking his own life

Watkins himself admitted he considered ending his life in 2019 after a particularly poor game for Leeds as he battles depression.

He told the Out Of Your League podcast: “We played at home against Wakefield, I played against Bill Tupou and I missed about seven tackles. He ran over the top of me and I had the worst game ever.

“My head was gone after it and that weekend I planned my suicide. I thought, ‘This is it for me.’

“I just felt there was nothing left for me really. I got to the point where I was planning and it was going to be in my own home.

“I didn’t think I had anything left to offer, everything I was doing was wrong. I was so hard on myself and on top of that I wasn’t playing well either.

Watkins’ Salford form got him back into the England reckoning

“But looking back, my kids really got involved with me that weekend, so it made me realise, ‘I can’t do that.’

“I looked at myself and thought, ‘I’m never going to be in that situation ever again where I’m going to think about ending my life.’

“Those kids there wouldn’t be with their dad if I did that.”

Watkins’ admission received praise from Marshall, who added: “That’s the mark of the man. He’s a fantastic ambassador for our sport.”

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