Brother of Olympic gymnasts collapses and dies while playing cricket

Tragedy as teacher brother of Olympic gymnasts Becky and Ellie Downie, 24, collapses and dies while playing cricket

  • Josh Downie, 24, died suddenly while playing cricket in Birkenhead, Merseyside
  • Brother of Olympic gymnasts Becky and Ellie Downie collapsed at a nets session
  • Medics performed CPR and took him to hospital where he was pronounced dead
  • As tributes are shared, mother Helen described him as ‘beautiful inside and out’ 

Josh Downie, 24, collapsed while playing cricket and was rushed to hospital where he was pronounced dead last week

The brother of Team GB Olympic gymnasts Becky and Ellie Downie has died suddenly after collapsing while playing cricket.

Josh Downie, 24, died in hospital on Thursday after he collapsed during a nets session in Birkenhead, Merseyside.

He had recently moved from Nottingham to Merseyside with his girlfriend to work as a teacher after graduating from university.

Ambulance crews rushed to his aid and gave him CPR before taking him to hospital, where he died despite the best efforts of medics.

His grieving mother, Helen Downie, said she was still in ‘complete shock’ at the sudden and heart-wrenching loss of her son.

Helen said: ‘He was beautiful inside and out. I will miss him forever.

‘He apparently stumbled and collapsed and never regained consciousness. An ambulance came and took him to hospital but he never woke up again.

‘He had just moved in September for his new job after graduating. It does not seem real at all that he’s gone. He would have been 25 in July.

‘He loved his family, his girlfriend, sport, animals. We always had such lovely good times together.’

Helen said her son loved children and she wanted to live to see him become a father himself.

She said a post-mortem into his death was in the process of being carried out.

Josh Downie (pictured far right) had spells with Nottinghamshire cricket clubs including Hucknall CC and Burton Joyce CC where he scored highest individual score in club history

Mr Downie had spells with Nottinghamshire cricket clubs including Hucknall CC, Fikserton & Thurgarton CC, and Burton Joyce CC.

He became a first-team regular at Burton Joyce CC in 2011 and went on to score the highest individual score by a player in the club’s history, 137 not out.

Mr Dow would often help young players at clubs with their game and was playing men’s cricket from his early teens.

Sporting talent runs in the family, with Mr Downie’s sisters, Becky Downie, 29, and Ellie Downie, 21, both having represented Team GB at the Summer Olympics.

The Nottinghamshire Cricket Board Premier League said: ‘Everybody within the NPL community is incredibly saddened to hear of the passing of Josh Downie, aged just 24.

‘Our deepest thoughts go out to Josh’s family at this time, as well as all of those who knew him from his spells with Hucknall CC and Fiskerton & Thurgarton CC.’

Josh’s mother Helen (centre with daughters and Olympians Ellie, left, and Becky, right) described Josh as beautiful inside and out as she described the family’s ‘complete shock’

Burton Joyce CC added: ‘It is with great sadness that we learn of the sudden passing of former player Joshua Downie.

‘Josh became a first-team regular in 2011 and went on to score the highest individual score by a player in club history, with 137* against Caythorpe in 2013.

‘From everyone at Burton Joyce CC, our hearts go out to Josh’s family at this difficult time.’

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