South African footballer dies after struck by lightning during match

Luyanda Ntshangase

A South African footballer Luyanda Ntshangase who was struck by lightning during a match has died in hospital.

Reports from his club Maritzburg United say the 21-year-old striker had been in an induced coma since being injured in a friendly match on the 1st of March.

In a statement on Facebook, the club described Ntshangase as one of its rising youngsters and said the team was in mourning.

Maritzburg United are currently fourth in South Africa’s Premier League.

“We are extremely sad about the loss of Luyanda, an exciting young player with enormous potential,” said Maritzburg chairman Farook Kadodia in the statement.

“On behalf of Maritzburg United Football club, we would like to extend our heartfelt condolences to the Ntshangase family,” read part of the statement.

Ntshangase had risen though the club’s ranks and made his debut against Kaizer Chiefs two seasons ago.

He was one of three players caught by the bolt of lightning during the match in KwaZulu-Natal.

The two others were only slightly hurt but Ntshangase suffered burns to his chest, South African media report.

The player’s death is the third tragedy to hit Maritzburg United in recent years.

Promising midfielders Mondli Cele, 27, and Mlondi Dlamini, 20, both died in separate car accidents in 2016 and 2017 respectively.