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Dutch BMX Olympic silver medallist in coma

THE HAGUE (AFP) — Dutch BMX rider Jelle van Gorkom, who won a silver medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics, was in a coma on Wednesday following a crash which left him with a damaged skull, officials said.

The 27-year-old was hurt in a crash while training at the national sports center at Papendal near Arnhem in the east of the country.

“After the accident, Jelle van Gorkom was taken to hospital. He has broken ribs, a fracture to the face, a tear in the skull and damage to the liver, spleen, and kidneys. He is being kept in a coma at the moment,” said a statement on the Royal Dutch Cycling Union website.

Jochem Schellens, the director of the Papendal sports center, described the incident as “terrible.”

“Our thoughts are with Jelle van Gorkom, his girlfriend, and his family and we wish them all the strength in the coming period.”

This bad news comes a little more than one week after another Olympic BMX rider, Caroline Buchanan, was seriously injured in a car crash in Australia.

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