Luyanda Ntshangase, a striker for South Africa's Premier Soccer League side Maritzburg United, is fighting for his life after being hit by lightning during a friendly match in KwaZulu-Natal last Friday.
Ntshangase, 21, had been on the field with the rest of his team-mates when he was injured along with three players from the opposite team, Arsenal FC Cape Town.
According to News24, the forward suffered burns to his chest, while Arsenal's players, Samkelo Nzimande, Njabulo Madlala and Ngcebo Ngcobo, came away with mild injuries.
After the accident, Ntshangase had to be resuscitated by the club's medics before being rushed to hospital, where he is now in an induced coma, says Soccer Laduma.
Coach pleads for football fraternity to pray for Ntshangase
After Maritzburg's goalless draw against SuperSport United on Saturday, the team's coach, Fadlu Davis, pleaded for the football fraternity to pray for Ntshangase.
"He is still in ICU. We are asking the whole football fraternity to please pray for him so he can make a speedy recovery," Davis told sports site Kick-off.com.
Quintin Jetto, Maritzburg’s operations manager, told Soccer Laduma: "We hope that the whole football fraternity keeps him their prayers at this very difficult and crucial time.
"Luyanda is still in hospital, and we will only know more this week. We're hoping for the best, and know that the thoughts of South African football fans are with him."
Ntshangase is a South African youth international. Last season he was promoted to Maritzburg's first team, where he has made several appearances under Davis' guidance.