Para athlete dies after being struck by discus cage

Tributes are being paid to paralympic javelin star Abdullah Hayayei who tragically died this week when a metal throwing cage fell on top of him during training.

The United Arab Emirates thrower was training at Newham Leisure Centre for the World Para-athletics Championships in London when the accident happened.

Details of what caused the metal throwing cage to fall are being investigated by the authorities.

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Emergency services were called to Newham Leisure Centre at around 5pm on Tuesday after receiving reports that a man had been seriously injured. Hayayei, 36, was pronounced dead at the scene.

A spokesman for the Met Police said: “London Ambulance Service and London’s Air Ambulance were called shortly after 5pm on Tuesday, 11 July, to reports of a seriously injured man at Newham Leisure Centre in Prince Regent Lane.

“The man was pronounced dead at the scene at 5:20pm. At this early stage, it is believed the man was struck by a metal pole which formed part of training facilities at the centre.”

Sir Philip Craven, IPC president, said: “We are all truly devastated by this tragic news and the passing of Abdullah. The thoughts, prayers and condolences of the whole Paralympic Movement are with Abdullah’s family, friends and teammates as well as the whole of the National Paralympic Committee of the UAE. We are all in state of shock at this terrible tragedy.”

Ed Warner, co-chair of London 2017, added: “This is a devastating event and everyone within the London 2017 Organising Committee is shocked and saddened. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of Abdullah’s family and teammates at what is undoubtedly a very difficult time for them. We will be working closely with all the competitors and teams over the days ahead to offer support wherever it is needed.”

The 36-year-old made his Paralympic debut at the 2016 Rio Paralympics and was set to compete in London 2017 at his second world championships.

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