By NOEL MURPHY
VETERAN marathon runner Phil Sage was shocked when he collapsed with a cardiac arrest during a baseball game at Deakin University two months ago.
Fortunately for him, the shock was administered by fellow baseballers with an onsite defibrillator and saved his life.
Not that the Ocean Grove engineer remembers anything of the incident – a small mercy, he suggests – but he knows he was lucky that enough people and gear were on hand to keep him alive.
“No one guy or gal knew everything to do but between them they knew everything to do,” he said.
“I had no idea (of any heart-attack risk) beforehand. I’d even been to the doctor a couple times.
“I used to run marathons – I’ve run 16 – and each year I’d do a full cardio check-up.
“The last I ran was probably four years ago but the job’s cut into my running time and I got overweight and out shape, even though I was still jogging or walking.”
A father of five, Mr Sage spent 17 days in hospital after Ambulance Victoria paramedics collected him at a game between his Deakin Blues club and East Belmont Saints.
“I can’t say enough thanks to the guys who responded that day, from my team and the Saints.
“Two ambulance units arrived after the teams called 000 and put flags on the road. They parked on the home-plate, literally.
“They credit the efforts of the baseball teams in saving crucial time by getting the equipment on me and getting me out of there and into hospital as quickly as they could.”
Mr Sage said he played baseball for years as kid and had just returned to the game this year.