Maritzburg mourn lightning victim Ntshangase

Luyanda Ntshangase Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

South African top-flight side Maritzburg United have confirmed the passing of young midfielder Luyanda Ntshangase, who was struck by lightning during a friendly match on March 1.

The 21-year-old's family informed the club of the news on Friday afternoon.

"We are extremely sad about the loss of Luyanda, an exciting young player with enormous potential," Maritzburg chairman Farook Kadodia said in a statement.

"He had been nurtured by the club and brought through our ranks, having being given his debut against Kaizer Chiefs two seasons ago by former head coach Ernst Middendorp.

"On behalf of Maritzburg United Football Club, we would like to extend our heartfelt condolences to the Ntshangase family in their time of bereavement - our prayers and thoughts are with you."

Ntshangase had been in a coma since the incident that occurred during a friendly clash with third-tier side Arsenal in Pietermaritzburg.

He made his debut against Kaizer Chiefs in October 2016, and made five appearances for the club in all.

He is the third Maritzburg player to pass away in a little over two years. Mondli Cele, 27, was killed in a car accident in January 2016, before Mlondi Dlamini, 20, also perished in a motor vehicle accident this past October.