Team GB women's hockey captain Kate Walsh will continue to play on despite undergoing surgery on a broken jaw suffered during the opening game of the team's London 2012 Olympic campaign against Japan.

Walsh spent Monday evening in hospital after being struck by a stick during Great Britain's 4-0 win over Japan, leaving the 32 year old with a fractured jaw and her participation in the remainder of the hockey competition in jeopardy.

A statement from the British Olympic Association has confirmed the severity of the injury to the Team GB skipper, but insists she has not been ruled out of the rest of London 2012.

Kate Walsh
Walsh is likely to play on despite her broken jaw.

"Walsh left the field of play and was immediately taken to hospital for assessment," a BOA statement said. "This morning she successfully underwent a surgical operation to stabilise the fracture with a plate.

"Her recovery from the operation will be monitored and her ongoing participation in the Olympic Games will be reviewed following her return to the athletes' village.

"The injury itself is not expected to prevent Walsh from playing hockey. Her continued participation is dependent on her recovery from the surgery and this will be assessed on an ongoing basis over the coming days.

"She is in good spirits and wishes to thank the hospital staff who have cared for her and all of those who have wished her well via social media."

Alongside the likes of Alex Danson, who overcame injury to take her place in London 2012, Walsh's experience makes her a vital component of a Team GB side who are expected to contest for medals come the back-end of the competition.

With 288 international appearances, Walsh's withdrawal would be a huge blow to Team GB, as would that of Helen Richardson, who was struck by the ball on the knee against Japan.

The double injury blow marred an impressive opening group A win for Team GB, which saw Danson score twice, either side of Sarah Thomas and Sally Walton's efforts.

The women take on South Korea in their second group game on Tuesday.