Former NRL prop Mose Masoe has been left humbled by a huge fund-raising initiative from rugby league fans in both Britain and Australia designed to help him him rebuild his life after a terrible career-ending injury.
More than Stg 100,000 ($181,700) has been raised in the UK and Australia over the Easter weekend to support Masoe, the former Sydney Roosters and Penrith Panthers player who was also a hugely popular figure with St Helens and Hull KR in the Super League.
The 31-year-old suffered a career-ending and life-changing spinal injury while playing for Hull KR 15 months ago and has since been diagnosed as tetraplegic, meaning he has partial or total loss of use of all four limbs and torso.
Rugby League fans were asked to buy virtual tickets for this weekend’s Super League action while a ‘We Stand With Mose’ campaign was launched in the NRL, with all funds set to go to the new Mose Masoe Foundation.
South Sydney Rabbitohs’ players ran out wearing Mose Masoe wigs before their win over Canterbury Bulldogs on Friday.
The foundation will first support Masoe – who can still walk only a few steps on his own and has no sensation or dexterity in his hands – while also helping others who suffer life-changing spinal injuries playing rugby.
“What has happened over this past couple of weeks, with the forming of the foundation and now over these past few days, has been truly overwhelming,” Mose said.
“It is something we’ll never forget.
“It is really humbling to see so many people, from former playing colleagues and opponents to fans of all clubs showing their love to our family.
“We are truly thankful to each and every person who has supported us.”