(BBC) A basketball player says he is “doing pretty well, all things considered” after his eye popped out in the middle of a game, New Zealand media report.
Akil Mitchell, who plays for the New Zealand Breakers, was in Auckland for an Australian NBL game on Thursday night when the incident happened.
The finger of an opposing player accidentally dislodged his eyeball.
The American fell to the ground holding his hands to his left eye and was rushed to hospital.
“With the palm of my hand I felt my eyeball on the side of my face,” he told New Zealand’s Radio Sport. “I could still see out of the eye.”
“I remember thinking oh man… this is kinda bad, but I actually felt it kind of out of place and that’s when I kind of freaked out a little bit.”
The 24-year-old said he remembered hearing the crowd and fellow players panicking and thought he would lose his sight and his career was over.
“Once I got in the ambulance they gave me a little pain medicine and some saline drops in my eye and I felt it slide back into place, which is also a really strange feeling.
“It felt so good to be able to blink again, which is insane.”
After being released from hospital on Thursday, he posted on Twitter that he was “seeing fine” and used the eyeballs emoji.
The player from North Carolina said he was expected to fully recover and could be playing again soon.