Top Pakistan sportsperson mourn Mansoor death
Karachi, May 14 (PTI) Pakistan's top sporting stars have all bemoaned the death of celebrated hockey goalkeeper, Mansoor Ahmed and expressed sadness he was not given proper treatment at the right time.
Pakistan's former cricket captain and coach, Waqar Younis in a message said it was a matter of concern that a renowned sportsman like Mansoor passed away in such conditions.
It is sad Mansoor could not be treated at the right time for his condition, Waqar said.
The goalkeeper who appeared in 338 internationals for Pakistan passed away on Saturday at a hospital in Karachi, after pleading to be sent to India for a heart transplant.
Pakistan's flamboyant all-rounder and former captain, Shahid Afridi who led a campaign through his foundation for Mansoor's treatment, minced no words in expressing disappointment at the absence of leading government officials and other sports luminaries at Mansoor's funeral held on Sunday evening.
It is a national shame that a top sportsman like Mansoor passed away in such sad circumstances, Afridi told the media after the funeral. "Me and my foundation did our best to ensure something is done for the Olympian but his death didn't give us the time," he lamented.
Afridi said death was a fact of life but the circumstances in which Mansoor passed away was sad.
Mansoor was a role model for youth and besides his goalkeeping heroics, he was a down-to-earth human being and regularly used to financially help needy players, he said.
He said it was regrettable that no government official was present at the funeral.
The captain and members of the Pakistan team in Ireland also sent condolence messages for Mansoor with Sarfaraz Ahmad terming his death as a big blow to Pakistan hockey.
He was our hero when we were young and we savoured his heroics for Pakistan and celebrated his skills. We are all sad to hear about his passing away, he said.
Mansoor had been pleading for the last few weeks to be sent to Chennai, India for a heart transplant and also appealed to the Indian government to issue him a visa on humanitarian grounds.
Despite a top Indian surgeon agreeing to help Mansoor, no one from the Pakistan government stepped in to help the goalkeeper how spent his last few weeks in hospital in ailing condition.
Mansoor, who became a household name in 1994 after heroic saves in penalty stroke shootouts against Germany and Holland in the Champions Trophy and World Cup finals.
Surprisingly, number of former Olympians and teammates, who never bothered to visit the hospital and see Mansoor also came out with statements after his death terming it as a big loss to Pakistan hockey and raised concerns over the circumstances in which he passed away.