Defiant through Shock – Liam Maitland

“I don’t remember much, but what I’ve been told is I turned pale and was puffing heaps. I came off the field to take a seat and then everything was a blur,” Liam Maitland recounts of his shocking collapse on November 14 while playing cricket for St Patrick’s College, Wellington 2XI against St Patrick’s College, Silverstream.

Maitland succumbed to what appeared to be a heart-attack, though technically that’s incorrect.

Maitland was suffering from Wolff-Parkinson-White (WPW) syndrome which is an extra electrical pathway between your heart’s upper and lower chambers. The condition, which is present at birth, is fairly rare but causes rapid heartbeats from which serious heart problems can occur.

Maitland required CPR for nine minutes. It was delivered by scorer David Faulkner and coach Dan Parun.

“I’m so grateful. Dan and Dave are parents who support the team every weekend. If it wasn’t for them I wouldn’t be alive,” Maitland acclaimed.

Four defibrillator shocks, and two and a half days in an induced coma, followed before Maitland started to come right.

“I woke up on Monday night and started to become more normal on Tuesday, but I was very tired. On Thursday I had surgery to fix the problem. That was pretty intense,” Maitland recalled.

By Friday he was back home for a two-week period of rest and recovery. He is grateful for the support of his parents and younger sister.

“They were really understanding. I got bored at times, but I’m lucky I got to enjoy Christmas.”

Maitland, the leading run scorer for his team in 2020, has returned to the field this year. Dramatically he scored 82 in his first innings back against Newlands College on January 30.

“I felt good from the outset. I could have got a century but I was dropped twice in the over before I got out. I was starting to get tired. It was pretty cool the reception I got from my teammates after that.”

Town went on to win the match. He would like to play for the First XI but is unsure he will get the chance given he’s Year 13 and the “First XI are pretty strong.”

The student peer leader is a social footballer in the winter.


-Story courtesy of College Sport Media