A third journalist has died suddenly while covering the FIFA World Cup in Qatar, just days after American sports reporter Grant Wahl suffered a fatal “heart attack” at the event.
48-year-old Wahl, a celebrated soccer journalist known to be fit and in good health, collapsed and died suddenly on Friday, leaving his family suspecting “foul play.”
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He reportedly collapsed while covering Friday’s quarter-final game between Argentina and Netherlands. Paramedics performed CPR on Wahl for several minutes at the scene. He was then rushed to a hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Wahl’s brother, Eric, announced his death on Instagram and expressed suspicion about his unexpected passing. Eric argues that his brother “was healthy” and that he does “not believe” that he would “just die.”
He even suggested there may have been foul play and made an emotional plea for help.
“My brother was healthy,” he asserted. “I do not believe my brother just died.”
Just 48 hours later, it was confirmed on Sunday that Khalid al-Misslam, a Qatari photojournalist working for Al Kass TV, “died suddenly.”
Qatar news outlet Gulf Times tweeted: “Al-Misslam, a Qatari, died suddenly while covering the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022.
“We believe in Allah’s mercy and forgiveness for him, and send our deepest condolences to his family.”
The news was confirmed by Al Kass TV. However, the network only briefly mentioned his death in a live broadcast and appears to be waiting on further details. As of Monday, no further information had been released about his death.
The cause of death has not been revealed.
On Monday, news broke of the passing away of a third journalist covering the FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar. ITV Sport’s technical director, Roger Pearce joins Grant Wahl and Khalid al-Misslam in dying suddenly and unexpectedly in Qatar.
“We have very sad news to bring you from here in Qatar,” said presenter Mark Pougatch. “Our technical director, Roger Pearce, who was here for his eighth World Cup, sadly passed away. Roger was a highly respected figure in the sports broadcasting industry, for ITV he was instrumental in the logistical planning and coverage of the Rugby World Cup, Football World Cup and European Championships,” added the presenter. “He always had a smile on his face and left a smile on your face,” he said, calling Pearce “professional and extremely popular.”
Also on Saturday, a World Cup security guard fell from what has been described as a “significant height” after Friday night’s quarter-final game between Argentina and the Netherlands, according to the Guardian.
The guard is reported by the Guardian to be a migrant worker and was in stable but critical condition.
A Filipino national hired to fix lights in a car park also died after a fall earlier in the tournament.
After the worker’s death, Nasser al-Khater, the head of Qatar’s World Cup operations, said, “death is a natural part of life — whether it’s at work, whether it’s in your sleep.”
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