Bradford amateur rugby league player dies during match

An amateur rugby league player has died after becoming unwell during a Yorkshire Men’s League match.

Max Blakeley was playing for Bradford-based club Birkenshaw Bluedogs in a match at Heworth near York on Saturday afternoon.

The 32-year-old came off the pitch at half time and become unwell before collapsing.

The Rugby League Benevolent Fund said paramedics were called but were unable to revive him.

‘Deepest condolences’

The Yorkshire Men’s League (YML) management committee said: “It is with profound sadness that we can confirm Birkenshaw player Max Blakeley tragically passed away during a match at Heworth.

“The RFL has been informed. The YML have sent their deepest condolences.”

Ralph Rimmer, Rugby Football League chief executive, said: “We are all incredibly saddened by news of the passing of Birkenshaw Rugby League club’s Max Blakeley.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with Max’s family and friends at this terrible time.

“The Rugby League Benevolent Fund has been in contact and is already providing support.”

Dozens of tributes have been paid to the player on social media.

Keighley Cougars tweeted that everyone at the club was devastated:

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BBC Sport – Rugby League

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