Rugby star Toutai Kefu has revealed horrifying details of the night his home was allegedly invaded by youths, saying his wife suffered the worst injuries.
In mid-August, Rachel Kefu was alerted to a noise on the ground floor of the family's Coorparoo home in Brisbane's south in the middle of the night when she was confronted by the intruders.
"She screamed," Kefu told Channel 9's Today, who said he jumped out of bed and ran downstairs.
"They were wielding a knife and a machete.
"We asked them to leave and we were actually backtracking towards the kitchen and I walked past the front door and said, 'there's the door, leave now. Cut your losses'.
"But they were quite agitated."
Kefu told Sportsmail this week that the episode only became particularly nasty when his son joined his parents in confronting the intruders.
"They were looking for car keys. It's been common in the area; car thefts. I think the kids were quite agitated when they saw me, because of the size of me. Then when my son came down, who is 21 and the same size as me; that really escalated things. One of the kids was happy to leave, but the other one just went crazy.
"If they were a bit older and more mature, they may have left. But they were young and could have been on drugs. They panicked.
"The bigger one did all the damage with his machete. He lunged at my wife and got her arm. I had a knife by then, but I put that down, grabbed a stool and charged them. There was blood everywhere. The scene was unbelievable, it was horrific."
The former Wallabies star and his son were each wrestling two of the invaders when one escaped the grip of Kefu, he explained.
"He kind of got away from me and there was blood everywhere at this stage," the sports star said.
"He got away from me and ran out the front door, I slipped and chased him but when I got up, he slipped as well around the front door and that's when my neighbour was running up the front steps and kind of crash-tackled him, pinned him down."
The neighbour, Ben Cannon, said he was woken by the horrific noise.
"You talk about a bloodcurdling scream, I'd never heard one and I now know what it means," he said.
"It's a particular sound in the still of the night. So I sort of ran towards it and the house was dark but then the door flew open and then I was confronted with a pretty horrific scene of what had been taking place and what was tied to all the kind of screams and commotion at the Kefu house."
Kefu told Sportsmail the family's decision to confront the intruders and not give in to their demands was instinctive.
"We went into attack mode. We're proud people — we'll stand up for ourselves. I didn't even realise I was stabbed until the whole ordeal was over. I was bleeding profusely. When we were waiting for the police and the ambulance to arrive, I was sat on the ground applying pressure to my wound with a towel, but it just wouldn't stop bleeding."
It turned out Kefu had suffered a sliced liver, broken ribs and heavy bleeding; requiring seven hours of surgery to save his life.
Kefu said his son was "cut pretty badly" on his back during the attack but Rachel suffered the worst stab wound of them all.
"She's still got her arm in a cast and we're still not sure whether she can get full use out of her hand but fingers crossed, we hope, she gets her cast off in a couple of weeks so we're just hoping with the therapist and with all the treatment over the next six months that she can get close to full use of her hand," he told Today.
After being discharged from hospital, the family have been recovering in their home and have been boosted by the outpouring of support from around the world. "We felt loved," Kefu told Sportsmail. "It has really helped us to heal."
"My wife sees a psychologist every week and I've had a couple of conversations with a professional — explaining what we are going through. He assured me it is normal and it will get better. It was traumatic, but we're handling it."
Following the incident, four boys - three 15-year-olds and a 13-year-old - were charged with attempted murder.
Police allege the group was armed with knives, a machete and an axe. They await a court date in November.
- with the NZ Herald.