A DESPERATE bid has been launched to bring a stranded rugby player home from a central American hospital.

Craig Webb, 30, from Leigh is being treated for influenza, kidney failure, a viral bacteria infection, a respiratory infection and possible sepsis at Hospital Chiriqui, in Panama.

His family has only been given limited contact and are now desperate to bring him home.

Kind-hearted community members have already raised more than £2,000 through the family’s online funding page.

Brother Mitch Webb said: “Craig was working in a hostel in Panama teaching yoga and went out there in October last year.

“He messaged us saying he felt unwell and thought it was a cold or flu.

“He tried to fight it off but he didn’t get any better and went to hospital last Tuesday and was given the full diagnosis.

“We are speaking with him over Facebook and he’s keeping us up to date as much as he can.”

The 22-year-old added: “There are three brothers and we are all from a rugby background so we are used to having injuries so thought it wasn’t too bad and he would get over the flu and would be released soon.

“His kidneys are getting worse and the doctors say there’s signs of sepsis now.

“It is worrying as he’s all alone over there and we are not in a position to help or go out there.”

The concerned brother said he cannot imagine what his family member is going through.

He added not knowing what is wrong is the most worrying thing about the incident.

Mitch added: “We are planning to use the Go Fund Me page to cover the cost of his medication and treatment.

“His insurance will not cover it as he’s been out there too long now.

“We also need to raise the cash to pay for a flight


Mitch also paid tribute to the community which has weighed in behind the family.

He added: “The support we’ve had to so far means so much to the whole family.

“It’s not just the money, it’s all the kind words from people.

“The donations are a massive step towards bringing my brother home.”

The family, including third brother Alex Webb, have played for teams such as Rochford Rugby Club.

To donate to the appeal, go to www.gofundme.com and search for Craig Webb.