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U.S. WOMEN'S NATIONAL TEAM

July 16, 2008
WAMBACH OUT
U.S. star to miss Olympics with broken leg


Abby Wambach will miss the Beijing Olympics with a broken leg suffered Wednesday night in San Diego.
Abby Wambach will miss the Beijing Olympics with a broken leg suffered Wednesday night in San Diego.
Linda Cuttone/Sports Vue Images
SAN DIEGO, Calif. –The United States road to an Olympic medal just got a little harder. Forward Abby Wambach suffered a mid-shaft oblique fracture of the tibia and fibula, the two bones that make up the lower leg, in a 31st minute collision with a Brazilian defender during the USA’s 1-0 victory Wednesday night and will miss the 2008 Olympics.

Wambach is the USA’s leading scorer this year with 13 goals and 10 assists. She has led the team in scoring in the last three world championships and is one of the top scorers in U.S. history with 99 goals in 127 games.

Wambach was taken to Sharp Memorial Hospital where X-Rays confirmed the fracture in her left leg. She will have surgery Thursday morning to have a titanium rod inserted. She will be on crutches for several weeks before the leg is weight-bearing, at which time she will start rehabilitation. Injuries of this sort usually require a 12-week recovery.

“I want to thank all the fans, the doctors, the players on the team and Tasha Kai for scoring the winning goal,” said Wambach from the emergency room. ”Obviously, it’s devastating, but above everything else, I’m only one player, and you can never win a championship with just one player. I have the utmost confidence in this team bringing home the gold.”

Wambach is the USA’s leading scorer this year with 13 goals and 10 assists. She has led the team in scoring in the last three world championships and is one of the top scorers in U.S. history with 99 goals in 127 games.

“I’m excited to watch them and cheer them on during this challenge they’ve been presented with,” said Wambach. “It’s really going to take everyone coming together. I love them all so much, and appreciate so many people involved with this game and the team. I put my heart and soul into this game every day, but sometimes accidents happen. I’ve gotten so many calls already, and I just want to say how much I appreciate that.”

Coach Pia Sundhage will have to rework the U.S. game plan, less than three weeks before the start of the Olympics, as well as work another player into the roster.
   
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