POSTED: October 13th 2009

Samaranch suffers mild heart incident in Monaco

Juan Antonio Samaranch: taken ill / lake images
Juan Antonio Samaranch: taken ill / lake images

SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT / Sports Features Communications

MONACO, Oct. 13: IOC honorary president Juan Antonio Samaranch was taken ill with what was reported as "a mild heart attack" while attending the Sportel international television convention at the Grimaldi Forum.

The 89-year-old former leader of the International Olympic Committee was taken to Princess Grace hospital as a precaution after suffering an irregular heartbeat.

Uncertainty surrounded his likely stay, varying from suggestions from hospital sources that he would remain under observation for between two and three days "because of his age" or a statement from his private office that he hoped to return home to Barcelona tomorrow.

Samaranch was IOC president from 1980 to 2001 when Dr Jacques Rogge took the helm. Following Rogge's election Samaranch also suffered serious health issues at that time. Two years ago Samaranch was taken ill during a festival in Madrid to acknowledge the sporting achievements of tennis player Rafael Nadal and footballer Iker Casillas.

Madrid's campaign team bidding - in vain - to win host rights to the 2016 Olympics Games looked to Samaranch to bring his influence to bear before the vote two weeks ago in Copenhagen. The Spanish capital lost out to Rio de Janeiro in the third and concluding round of voting by the IOC.

Keywords · Juan Antonio Samaranch · IOC · Jacques Rogge

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