Teenage Indian Athlete Drowns in Adelaide

The teenage football player, who was visiting Australia for Pacific School Games, drowned at Glenelg in Adelaide.


A 15-year-old member of the Indian delegation at the Pacific School Games drowned to death on Dec. 10 at Holdfast Marina at Glenelg in Adelaide, Australia. Four other Indian girls who were caught in the accident survived.

While the other girls were rescued on Dec. 10, the body of the deceased was not found until the morning of Dec. 11. It was pulled from the water. Glenelg is a “treacherous spot that had claimed other lives,” Holdfast’s mayor Stephen Patterson said.

“There are signs near the actual breakwater itself alerting people to the fact that there are strong currents,” he told ABC radio. On New Year’s Day in 2016, two boys drowned in the area.

“We heard screams and people in distress,” Frida Meares, 12, said, according to the Advertiser.

“Without thinking, I started to run towards the lifesavers … they all stood up when they saw me.”

Another witness said: “(The group) was pretty agitated. Some of the girls were asking for goggles so they could go look for (the missing girl).”

The group, which included three 17-year-old girls and one 12-year-old girl, was in the breakwater rocks at 5.50 pm. The search for the 15-year-old girl’s body was called off on Dec. 10 evening due to poor light.

The Indian High Commission has provided support to the group, which was part of the school games. Officials flew to Adelaide from Sydney on Dec. 10. The school games organizers did not mention the sport played by the girl, but Australian football player Melissa Barbieri tweeted that the girl was a footballer.

The group was scheduled to leave for India on Dec. 11. However, now the two 17-year-old players are at Flinders Medical Centre, with one in critical condition. Another 17-year-old is at Royal Adelaide Hospital while the 12-year-old girl is at the Women’s and Children’s Hospital in a stable condition.

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