Last Saturday, Fabrice Muamba got exceptionally lucky. The Bolton Wanderers midfielder suffered a cardiac arrest on the pitch at White Hart Lane, but thanks to playing in the Premier League, trained medics were nearby and an ambulance was on hand to take him to the London Chest Clinic, where doctors saved his life. Muamba's story made international news, and the 23-year-old is now well on his way to recovery.
There are many other young athletes with heart problems, however, and most of them aren't as fortunate as Muamba is. Four days after Muamba's collapse, D. Venkatesh, a 28-year-old Bangalore Mars player, suffered a cardiac arrest during a match against SW Railway. No ambulance was present, and Venkatesh passed away.
While we celebrate Muamba's recovery, it's good to remember that he was one of the lucky ones. Venkatesh won't get the worldwide press that Bolton midfielder did, which is certainly understandable, but he's every bit as important to the story - Muamba's collapse was shocking, but this is a problem that happens to footballers around the world, regardless of station.