Sydney: Former Sydney FC midfielder Chris Naumoff has been forced to retire due to a heart problem, mirroring an issue that has struck several elite sportsmen in recent times.
The 21-year-old was let go by the A-League club at the end of last season and he had just secured a move to Spanish Segunda Division club Numancia.
But during a medical with his new side they found an abnormality of his heart, which was diagnosed as hypertrophic cardiomyopathy — a condition that puts athletes in particular at risk of cardiac arrest. His diagnosis is similar to that of footballer Fabrice Muamba, whose career was cut short after he collapsed on the pitch in 2012.
Earlier this year, England cricketer James Taylor was also forced to retire at the age of just 26 because of a "very serious" heart condition.