Kolkata-based football club George Telegraph's Ugandan import Alex Katete died after a 'massive' heart attack in Silchar, Assam, early on Tuesday morning.
This happened hours after George Telegraph's 1-2 loss to Lajong F.C in their second division I-League match in which Katete scored from the penalty. Katete was 24 and this was his first match in India.
"He seemed depressed and had skipped dinner on Monday. At around 2.30 am Katete's Nigerian roommate Francis informed coach Raghu Nandi that the player was suffering from chest pain and having breathing problems. He was then rushed to the Silchar Medical College Hospital and despite efforts to resuscitate him, doctors at the hospital certified him as 'brought dead'," said Babul Hore, general secretary, District Sports Association, Silchar.
Katete was registered on February 20 with the club and was recruited after a thorough medical check-up, it was learnt. George Telegraph have already contacted Katete's agent, club general-secretary and All India Football Federation (AIFF) vice-president Subrata Dutta said.
The body would now be flown to Kolkata on Wednesday afternoon. Dutta said the AIFF has contacted the Ugandan Football Federation and the body will be flown home with Katete's compatriot Salim who is in Kolkata and the player's agent by Thursday. A condolence meeting where all teams attended was held on Tuesday evening.
George Telegraph play again on Thursday against ONGC. Following the incident, no matches were held on Tuesday and the rest day on March 8 scratched to ensure that competition ends as scheduled on March 9. Tuesday's match between BMFC and Oil India will be held on Wednesday.