Footballer Burnie Dockers suffers a heart attack after a fight on the pitch in north west Tasmania
Tasmania Police are investigating an on-pitch brawl that led to a player suffering a heart attack during a football match in north-west Tasmania.
- Player Tobi Mcinnes is in stable condition
- In a statement, the Burnie Football Club said the quick action of coaches and paramedics watching the game saved his life.
- Police say the circumstances of Mcinnes’ injuries are now the subject of a police investigation
Burnie Dockers player Tobi Mcinnes went into cardiac arrest after a scrimmage during the game between Penguin and Burnie at Burnie’s West Park Oval on Saturday afternoon.
Police say the incident happened behind the play during the third quarter of the North West Football League game.
The match was therefore abandoned.
Three off-duty paramedics watching the game came to Mcinnes’ aid and he was treated on the pitch before being taken to North West Regional Hospital.
He was later transferred to Launceston General Hospital and is in stable condition.
In a statement, the Burnie Football Club said the quick action of coaches and paramedics saved his life.
Burnie club chairman Jamie Boag said the Dockers wanted to thank everyone who helped after the incident.
“The quick actions of those involved definitely saved Tobi’s life,” Boag said.
“A heartfelt thank you to our coaches and staff Kim Chatwin, Damien Moore, Mieke Bacon and Craig Stretton, Penguin coaches Rod Adams and Lyndon O’Neil and field referee Brett Menzies for their initial assistance.
“Tobi was so lucky that we had three paramedics watching the game in Hannah Best, Elka Best and Holly Johnstone, who ran across the floor to provide assistance and continued their assistance even after the ambulance arrived. .
“It was a traumatic experience for everyone involved and for those who witnessed it.”
The Tasmanian Sports Chaplain will visit the club on Tuesday evening to offer advice and support to players and officials.
“We invite all supporters who have also been affected to contact the club to attend one of the sessions,” Mr Boag said.
Clubs send best wishes for ‘a speedy recovery’
In a social media post, Penguin Football Club described the incident as a traumatic experience and “wish Tobi all the best for a speedy recovery”.
Other North West Coast football clubs have also sent their best wishes to the footballer.
Latrobe Football Club wished him well in his recovery, with chairman Greg Donald sending “our best wishes to Tobi and his family” and wishing him a speedy recovery.
“It is in difficult times like this that the football family pulls together, and as the news leaked yesterday [Saturday]it shook the whole football community,” he said in a statement on Facebook.
“Our hearts go out to both Burnie Dockers Football Club and Penguin Football Club and all the supporters concerned.”
Ulverstone Football Club have also sent their thoughts to everyone affected by the incident. They will also have an advisor at the club this week for players, support staff and spectators.
Detective Inspector Steve Jones said police are continuing to investigate the incident and are calling on the community for help.
“We are calling on witnesses to come forward and provide assistance to investigators,” he said.
“Police take all cases of assault seriously and we need the help of the community to ensure those responsible are correctly identified.”
In a statement on Monday, the AFL Tasmania said it and the NWFL were “aware of an alleged on-field incident involving members of Burnie and Penguin Football Clubs”.
“As this is a police matter, the AFL Tasmania and the NWFL will make no further comment at this time.”
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