A FOOTBALL match was abandoned last night after a director of one of the clubs collapsed in the stand.
Shildon AFC were 20 minutes into their game at Seaham Red Star when the man, named locally as John Hay, fell to the ground, prompting friends and colleagues to call the emergency services.
The players were taken off the pitch as a North East Ambulance Service crew arrived at Seaham Town Park to give treatment to Mr Hay, believed to be 65, who has been one of the visiting team’s directors for some years.
Paramedics took him to Sunderland Royal Infirmary.
A decision was made to call off the game, a Durham County Challenge match.
A spokeswoman for the ambulance service said: “We got a call at 7.39pm and we were on the scene at 7.53pm. The patient was taken to the nearest casualty unit which was at Sunderland Royal.”
Shildon AFC president John Atkinson said the whole club was sending positive thoughts to Mr Hay’s family.
Mr Atkinson said: “Around 60 of us had travelled down to Seaham to see the game and John was in the stands when he suddenly collapsed.
“We don’t know how he’s doing at this point. Our only concern is that he’s OK and that he pulls through.
“He’s one of our directors and I’ve known him for at least 15 years.
“John’s had some health problems in the past – he had a heart bypass and has lost both his legs, and wears prosthetic limbs – but he has been doing relatively well recently.
“We are keeping our fingers crossed and live in hope.”