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June 17, 2014

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City fan dies after watching World Cup for 3 nights

A SHANGHAI football fan who stayed up for three nights to catch the World Cup action died after suffering a brain hemorrhage while watching a match.

The 39-year-old, surnamed Zhou, was rushed to the Shanghai No. 10 People’s Hospital at 3am on Sunday after having a stroke caused by brain stem hemorrhage. He was pronounced dead at 9pm that night.

According to Gao Liang, director of the hospital’s neurosurgery department, the patient had a history of high blood pressure.

Relatives said Zhou was a keen football fan and had already stayed up for the two previous nights watching the games held in Brazil.

Zhou was sitting on his sofa at home watching the match between Uruguay and Costa Rica in the early hours of Sunday when he suddenly collapsed.

Gao said people with high blood pressure and heart conditions are more vulnerable to brain hemorrhages when events make them excited or emotional.

Shanghai’s hospitals reported an larger number of emergency cases than usual last weekend — the first weekend of the World Cup. These included football fans feeling the effects of staying up late and sacrificing sleep to watch the tournament.

Unsociable hours

According to an accident and emergency doctor at the Huashan Hospital, they saw the number of patients increase by 50 percent over the weekend.

Some 40 percent had respiratory or stomach problems, often caused by irregular eating and sleeping patterns.

The 11-hour time difference between China and Brazil means 2014 FIFA World Cup matches are kicking off at unsociable hours for China’s football fans.

Most group games start at midnight, 3am, 4am and 6am, leaving Chinese fans struggling to balance their football fix with their daily routine.

“I’ve been watching games every day for the past three days, mostly the 3am and 6am games,” said Liu Yitao, a 29-year-old white collar worker.

Liu admitted that by yesterday he was feeling tired at work and now plans only to watch group stage games at weekends.

Fellow fan Shen Jing also planned a selective strategy.

“I’ll pick the important games to watch live, and follow the rest through the news or TV reruns of matches,” she said.

Other parts of the country have also reported deaths linked to the World Cup.

On Saturday, a 50-year-old driver, who is said to have stayed up all night watching the football, and four passengers died when their vehicle collided with a bus in a tunnel in Wenzhou, Zhejiang Province.

And Suzhou and Dalian each reported a case of a fan dying while watching games.


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