'You never got up after a tackle': Sister's tribute to rugby player who died during match

14 February 2022, 10:01 | Updated: 14 February 2022, 16:23

Jack Jeffery, 27, died after suffering an injury on the pitch.
Jack Jeffery, 27, died after suffering an injury on the pitch. Picture: Facebook

By Sophie Barnett

The sister of a rugby player who died after being injured in a match has said her life will "forever be empty" after the loss of her "beautiful baby brother".

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Jack Jeffery died in hospital on Sunday after he suffered serious injuries while scoring a try for Evesham Rugby Club, in a match against Berkswell & Balsall.

The 27-year-old was taken to hospital but tragically died from his injuries, the club confirmed.

Jack's sister, Daisy Jeffery, shared a heartbreaking tribute on Facebook, saying her "beautiful baby brother left behind a family who worshipped him".

"It was just a simple game of rugby, like any other Saturday doing what you loved most," she wrote.

"You scored an amazing try but just one accidental tackle and you never got back up. I’m so sorry they couldn’t save you. And I’m so sorry I had to kiss you goodnight in that hospital bed. You were just 27 and had your whole life ahead of you."

She added that her life will "forever be empty" without Jack in it.

"I can’t believe I’m never going to be able to dance with you at my wedding, watch us both navigate having families of our own, I’ll never be able to hear your laugh around the dinner table or listen to all of your funny stories.

"Our family will never be the same with you not here. I will forever treasure our last day together as a family."

Their father, Glenn Jeffery, said Jack passed away "doing the thing that he loved most, playing rugby".

Writing on Facebook, he said: "It is with great sadness that I need to let you know we lost our beloved son Jack yesterday.

"Jack passed away doing the thing that he loved the most, playing rugby.

"Jack was the most kind hearted, generous and beautiful son who enriched the lives of everyone who was lucky to know and have met him. He will be so missed by his family and friends.

"RIP our beautiful boy xx"

12.02.22 🕊💔 . My beautiful baby brother. I can’t even believe I’m having to write these words. It was just a simple...

Posted by Daisy Grace Jeffery on Sunday, February 13, 2022

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Evesham Rugby Club's chairman, David Summerfield, confirmed Jack's death on Facebook, expressing the club's "immeasurable sadness".

"Jack was adding another try to his phenomenal record and during the act and subsequent challenge of scoring he was injured," Mr Summerfield wrote.

"He was taken to Walgrave Hospital where he tragically lost his fight."

He added: "A more committed, loyal ‘Clubman’ is hard to find. He would often return from London for training and was always at the heart of club activities.

"He served his club, his teammates and the county with distinction and provided much satisfaction to the club supporters in knowing exactly where the whitewash was.

"As a club, we have been overwhelmed by the messages of support and goodwill from the rugby community. Jack was calm, respected and highly thought of.

"Our club and community have lost such a bright light."

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The rugby club was closed on Sunday, and flew at half-mast out of respect for Jack.

The Rugby Football Union expressed its "heartfelt sympathies" to Jack Jeffery's family, writing on Twitter: "The thoughts of everyone in the game are with @EveshamRFC, their players, members and the wider rugby community."