Stephanie Inglis takes time over judo return in pursuit of 2022 Games

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Inglis 'can't remember' Vietnam crash

Stephanie Inglis says she has time on her side as she attempts to return to judo for the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

Inglis, 28, is recovering from serious neck and head injuries sustained in a road accident in Vietnam last year.

"I've done judo since I was four, that's been everything to me," the 2014 Commonwealth silver medallist said.

"If I manage to qualify for 2022, I do think I would qualify with a good medal prospect or chance in hand. That would be my final bout."

'Did this actually happen to me?'

Inglis, from Daviot, near Inverness, was in Vietnam teaching English and has no memory of the motorbike taxi accident in May.

Doctors gave her a 1% chance of survival and she received treatment in Thailand before being flown back to Scotland in June.

"I remember teaching that morning," Inglis told BBC Scotland.

"I had the 'pin the tail on the donkey' game. The last 20 minutes of my two classes I played a game. We had lots of fun. All the kids were laughing and really enjoyed it.

"And then I remember finishing up my classes and going down to get my taxi home and then I don't remember anything until I woke up in Edinburgh about six weeks later.

Stephanie Inglis and Nekoda Davis
Inglis (left) won silver in the women's 57kg event at the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games

"I had broken my neck in two places, I had double pneumonia, septicaemia, I'd had a DVT [deep vein thrombosis] in my left arm. I just remember thinking, 'wow, this can't be happening' because I had absolutely no memory, no flashback, nothing.

"I was just wondering, 'is this real? Did this actually happen to me?'

'A titanium plate where my skull used to be'

Friend Khalid Gehlan set up a crowdfunding campaign to pay for her medical costs, with an initial target of £250,000 set.

"The amount that was raised, I just couldn't get my head around it, it was so much money and that is what helped save me," she said. "If it wasn't for that, I wouldn't be here today.

"I think it was over about £350,000, which is a crazy number. So much.

"For Khalid to have set it up, from knowing him for so long, I just can't thank him ever enough. It was absolutely amazing what he managed to do for me and it's something I'll never forget."

Inglis is currently having occupational therapy, speech and language therapy and physiotherapy as well as spending regular sessions in the gym and she will have a further operation in January.

"I'm getting a titanium plate put in my head to where my skull used to be," she explained.

"After that it's just recovery and hopefully I'll be able to take a big leap and that'll get pushed on quite quickly.

"Vietnam was the first time time that I'd ever done anything without having judo behind me. It was something so different but I definitely want to get back into the sport.

"I'm lucky to have a lot of time on my side to try and get back, just take it nice and slow and easy.

"It might not happen but hopefully it will so I've just got to give it a go and see what happens."

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