Footballer’s life saved by the opposition team of medics

Pictured is Ryan Zon aged 19 in the Northern General Hospital's,Coronary Care Ward
Pictured is Ryan Zon aged 19 in the Northern General Hospital's,Coronary Care Ward

A footballer owes his life to life to the opposition - a team of medics that went into action after he had a heart attack on the pitch in Sheffield.

Two other doctors playing rugby on a nearby pitch at Warminster Road, Norton, joined members of Sheffield Medics FC in giving CPR to Ryan Zon, aged 19, until an ambulance arrived.

“Talk about being in the right place at the right time - Ryan will never be as lucky again,” said his mother, Tracey, aged 47, who is now campaigning for all football clubs to have defibrillators in their first aid kits.

Ryan, of Aston, a Sheffield United fan, ‘died’ for ten minutes while playing for Swallownest Miners Welfare Reserves. It was later found the sports-mad teenager has a rare heart condition and he needs a bypass operation.

Team manager Dixie Nightingale said: “People saw it live on TV when Fabrice Muamba had a heart attack - and to see it happen in front of your own eyes to one of your own players was shocking.

“All the lads on the pitch were affected by it. We had just treated a goalkeeper who had cut his head when he started pointing behind us at Ryan on the ground.

“We ran over to him and thought he was having a seizure, but the team we were playing were medical students and doctors and recognised it was a heart attack and started giving CPR. Another two qualified doctors were playing rugby on a neighbouring pitch, and they ran over, and they all took it in turns to work on him.”

Iain Ruddick, secretary of Sheffield Medics, said: “Everyone knows what happened to Fabrice Muamba and this was the same thing - our players went into doctor mode and did the CPR they were taught from day one at medical school.”