Ex-France international Ibrahim Diarra has passed away at the age of 36 after suffering complications following cardiac arrest.
Diarra, who was capped just once by Les Bleus – against Italy in 2008 – had been in a critical condition in a Paris hospital since last Friday.
According to AFP, the former France and Castres back rower suffered numerous strokes since being admitted, which caused irreversible brain damage.
Diarra spent seven seasons at Top 14 side Castres, where he won the domestic title in 2013, with his all-action showings a real standout.
Speaking to AFP, ex-coach Laurent Travers said of Diarra: ‘He brought laughter and a ray of sunshine. He gave everything on the field.’
Meanwhile, French Rugby Federation president Bernard Laporte tweeted: ‘I’m devastated that he could go so soon. We will always remember his smile, and an eternal memory of a great rugby player. My most sincere condolences to the family and those close to Ibrahim Diarra.’
Je suis bouleversé qu’il ait pu partir si tôt. Nous retiendrons pour toujours son sourire, et le souvenir éternel d’un grand joueur de rugby. Mes plus sincères condoléances à la famille et aux proches de Ibrahim Diarra.
— Bernard Laporte (@BernardLaporte_) December 18, 2019
Ibrahim Diarra faisait partie de la grande famille du #XVdeFrance. Nous n’oublierons jamais son sourire, sa bonne humeur communicative et sa générosité sur le terrain. Toutes nos condoléances à sa famille et à ses proches pic.twitter.com/pOmx6htLAn
— France Rugby (@FranceRugby) December 18, 2019
Photo: Getty Images