Newspaper article Tweed Daily News (Tweed Heads, Australia)

M'bah in Mourning; Tributes Flow for Much-Loved Player after Shock Death

Newspaper article Tweed Daily News (Tweed Heads, Australia)

M'bah in Mourning; Tributes Flow for Much-Loved Player after Shock Death

Article excerpt

Byline: Alina Rylko alina.rylko@tweeddailynews.com.au

THE COMMUNITY is in mourning following the tragic death of Murwillumbah Mustangs player Grant Cook, who died in hospital on Sunday night after collapsing during a rugby league preliminary final earlier that day.

The 29-year-old took himself off the field "distressed" a minute before half time, as the Mustangs were leading the Casino Cougars by 8:4 in a high-octane, Northern Rivers Regional Rugby League semi-final contest at Murwillumbah's homeground of Stan Sercombe Oval.

Tweed Shire Councillor Barry Longland, who was watching the game, said spectators were overwhelmed with concern as Cook collapsed on the sidelines, and watched anxiously as the father-of-two received first-aid.

"There was a break away by Casino and the player that was injured took a hit to the head during the intercept. He came off the field of his own steam, then he collapsed and had a fit," Cr Longland said.

Cr Longland said players and supporters held up sheets to protect Cook's privacy while attempts were made to revive him.

"It felt like an eternity by the time the ambulance arrived and they further gave him oxygen to sustain his breathing ," Cr Longland said.

"When the ambulance left it was announced that he was breathing by himself.

"Everything was on edge until it was announced he was okay and on his way to hospital and he was breathing on his own."

NSW Ambulance confirmed paramedics were called for help at 3.32pm, with the first of three ambulances arriving at the Nullum St fields at 3.57pm, with the 20-minute wait longer than standard.

"You would hope that when the patient is serious, it would take 10 to 12 minutes for the first resource to arrive," a NSW Ambulance spokesman said.

He later passed away, surrounded by family and friends. …

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