Former Australia captain Lynagh showing progress as he recovers from stroke in Brisbane
08:31 GMT, 20 April 2012
Former Australia captain and World Cup winner Michael Lynagh is showing positive signs but remains in a critical condition in a Brisbane hospital after suffering a stroke, his doctor said on Friday.
The 48-year-old former flyhalf has been in hospital since Monday after suffering problems with his vision, coordination and balance.
'This significant stroke is a rare event for someone of Michael’s age,' neurologist Rob Henderson said.
Legend: Michael Lynagh was on a trip back to his homeland
Glory: Lynagh helped Australia win the World Cup in 1991
'The next few days are critical because of swelling in the region of the brainstem, but current signs are positive,' Henderson said of the former Queensland Red.
Lynagh, who won the World Cup in 1991 and played in 72 tests for the Wallabies, retired from international rugby in 1995 and moved to England, where he now resides.
Australian Rugby Union chief executive John O'Neill said he had been inundated with calls asking about Lynagh’s condition.
Lynagh’s father Ian was grateful for the support.
'It has been a difficult few days and it is reassuring to know that there are so many people who care,' he said.
Lynagh won 72 Test caps and retired from international rugby in 1995 as the world record points scorer with 911, a total which remains an Australian record.
An inspirational playmaker Lynagh, who also won 100 caps for Queensland, made his Test debut in 1984 and he was part of Australia's Grand Slam-winning team later that year.
Lynagh was vice-captain of Australia's World Cup-winning side in 1991 and he scored the late winning try against Ireland in the quarter-finals.
Bitter sweet: Lynagh lifts the Tetley's Bitter Cup with Francois Pienaar in 1998
After captaining Australia to the quarter-finals of the 1995 World Cup, Lynagh retired from international rugby and joined Saracens at the start of the professional era.
Lynagh was the club's first major signing after Nigel Wray had taken control of the club and he helped attract Philippe Sella, Francois Pienaar and Kyran Bracken to the club.
Lynagh spent two years at Saracens, guiding them to a 48-18 victory over Wasps in the 1998 Tetley Bitter Cup final and he has been enrolled in the club's Hall of Fame.