Collapsed rugby player dies

2012-04-26 00:00

THE 14-year-old Greytown High School pupil who collapsed while playing rugby on Tuesday afternoon died in Grey’s Hospital late that night.

Grade 9 pupil Yavetsh Seebadri was described by a school staff member as a quiet and respectful boy loved by everybody.

Yavetsh’s family declined to comment when contacted by The Witness yesterday.

“Greytown High School would like to convey sympathy to his family and friends at this time of bereavement,” said principal Johan Scholtz. He said staff and fellow Grade 9 pupils would receive counselling.

Yavetsh’s death follows that of a teacher at the school who died last week after an unsuccessful medical procedure. The teacher’s funeral will be held tomorrow.

The school’s under-14B team had been playing against Voortrekker High School at Carter High School when Yavetsh collapsed.

Scholtz said he was the team’s eighth man and had reportedly been standing next to a scrum.

Yesterday, Netcare 911’s Chris Botha said paramedics arrived at the scene where first aiders were administering CPR.

“The medics immediately started with advanced life support resuscitation and managed to regain a heart beat,” Botha said.

Last month, Bolton Wanderers footballer Fabrice Muamba collapsed during an FA Cup tie against Tottenham Hotspur.

His heart stopped beating for 78 minutes but he made a miraculous recovery and was recently released from hospital.

Earlier this month, Italian Piermario Morosini of second-division side Livorno collapsed in a match against Pescara and died on the way to hospital.

Sharks team doctor Ewoudt van der Linde told The Witness that it was vital to have an automated external defibrillator (AED) at all school sporting events.

“It is vital that every school gets one, and it should be on the side of the field at every sporting event,” he said.

It was recently reported that one of the things that saved Muamba’s life was the presence of an AED.

Van der Linde said very little was known about sudden cardiac death, but research was going on into what can be done to prevent it.

He added that screening of athletes would help to eliminate sudden cardiac arrest in sports.

The Education Department expressed its condolences to the family, fellow pupils and teachers.

The Health Department’s Chris Maxon said he was unable to comment on the boy’s death due to doctor-patient confidentiality.

• lunga.biyela@witness.co.za

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