’s clash with has been abandoned after Tom Lockyer collapsed in the middle of the pitch during the second half.
In an off the ball incident with no-one around him, the 29-year-old fell to his knees and then onto his stomach in the 55th minute and required immediate medical attention as physios and doctors from both teams rushed on to help him.
The frightening scenes were reminiscent of last season’s Championship Play-Off final against Coventry in May when he was stretched off the pitch after collapsing 11 minutes into the game at Wembley.
Lockyer suffered atrial fibrillation of the heart that day and underwent an operation to correct an irregular heartbeat, but he was given the all clear to continue playing and signed a contract extension with Luton in June.
The way Lockyer collapsed at the Vitality Stadium on Saturday was eerily similar, with a stunned silence sweeping across the crowd as the doctors and paramedics treated him.
Conscious that something was seriously wrong, Luton boss Rob Edwards ran onto the pitch and ushered his players away from their skipper so he could receive medical attention.
Referee Simon Hooper initially took the players over to the dugout, with some even seen praying for Lockyer, before the match was suspended and the two teams returned to their respective dressing rooms.
Lockyer was eventually stretchered off the pitch, with supporters from both clubs chanting his name and applauding him as he left the field.
According to the Bournemouth team doctor, Lockyer was ‘alert and responsive’ in the tunnel and has been taken to hospital.
Some 20 minutes after Lockyer was stretchered off, it was announced that the match would be abandoned with both sets of players shaken by the events.
A statement from the Premier League read: ‘The match between AFC Bournemouth and Luton Town FC has been abandoned due to a player medical incident. Our thoughts are with Tom Lockyer and all players involved in today’s match.’
Later on Saturday evening, a statement from Luton confirmed that Lockyer was ‘responsive’, also adding: ‘We don’t know the full extent of what happened and what the next steps are at this stage, but we thank Bournemouth and the medical staff on both sides for their immediate response, which was absolutely amazing.’
On the decision to abandon the game, Luton’s statement explained: ‘Players from both sides were in no state of mind to continue with the game after seeing their much-loved team-mate and friend taken off like that, and staff could not carry on with managing the game in such circumstances having had to deal with the situation.’
The two sides re-emerged from the dressing room and did a lap around the Vitality Stadium, applauding supporters who clapped and sung Lockyer’s name.
Luton boss Edwards was in tears as he walked around the pitch, thanking both sets of supporters for singing the name of his captain.
Speaking in the summer, Lockyer had hoped his issues were behind him, telling the BBC: ‘I’ve had the operation to fix it and it shouldn’t happen again.
‘There’s not really any reason to say why that happened.
‘I’ve been given the all-clear – it is what it is and I just want to draw a line under it now and move on.
‘I’ve had my full heart checked and double checked with all the scans and tests they can do on a heart, and they’ve all come back positive.’
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