Former Swindon Robins captain Leigh Adams has undergone a six hour operation after suffering multiple injuries in a motorbike accident.
The 40-year-old, who was training for an off-road race in Australia, suffered extensive spinal cord damage, punctured lungs and broken ribs.
"He has no feeling in his legs at present except a little bit in one thigh," said his wife Kylie.
"That situation could certainly change in the weeks and months ahead."
She added: "He's currently in intensive care but could be moved out today into the special spinal unit.
"He's actually very stable and probably a bit too well to be in intensive care. He's very alert and talking."
Former Swindon manager Alan Rossiter, who spoke to the rider who accompanied Adams in the air ambulance, said: "He told me that the neck brace Leigh had on is absolutely mangled.
"And he felt that if he hadn't had that brace on we could've all been going to a funeral in Australia next week."