KARACHI: Pakistan’s World Cup winning field hockey goalkeeper Mansoor Ahmed passed away due to heart-related complications. He was 49.
The former hockey star was suffering for weeks from complications stemming from a pacemaker and stents implanted in his heart. He was moved to ICU this morning after his health deteriorated.
Ahmed was a sporting icon in Pakistan since helping the country win the 1994 World Cup in Sydney with his penalty stroke push against the Netherlands in the final.
“I may have broken a lot of Indian hearts on the field of play by beating India in the Indira Gandhi Cup (1989) and in other events but that was sport,” Ahmed had said in his last interview.
“Now I need a heart transplant in India and for that I need support from the Indian government,” he said.
Ahmed — who played 338 international matches, participated in three Olympics and various other high-profile events in a career spanning from 1986 to 2000 — said the visa could be a lifesaver.
“Humanity is paramount and I too would be obliged if I get a visa and other help in India,” said Ahmed.
The sport has been one of the few avenues to improve relations between the arch-rivals, he added.
“We have had a great rivalry and sports have helped on a number of occasions so that should continue,” said Ahmed.