Midfielder Lee Orton scored a cracking goal in his last game.

But he doesn’t remember it – nor anything else from the terrifying day when he “died” on the soccer pitch.

Now the 30-year-old player is back in his Huddersfield home.

He’s got a pacemaker fitted to his heart and a desire to meet up and say “Thanks” to the man who saved him when he collapsed during the first match of the season.

Former nurse Mark Martin, of Emley, had gone to the Aimbry versus Brook Motors match to watch his sons play.

But he leapt into action when Aimbry player Lee collapsed, having suffered a heart attack.

Mark massaged Lee’s heart for 10 minutes before paramedics arrived to use a defibrillator to shock him back to life.

Lee, who is a contracts manager for an electrical firm, said he can remember nothing of the fateful day.

“I don’t remember turning up at the ground at Bradley Mills, getting changed nor warming up.

“My teammates tell me I scored a goal before I collapsed but there is nothing until I woke up in the hospital.

“I’ve not got to meet Mark yet but when I do I intend to give him the biggest thank-you he can get, both from me and my partner Laura. Without him I would not be here.”

Lee had played football ever since his days at Almondbury High School and played for the likes of Garforth and Brighouse Town before returning to play with his mates at Aimbry in the Huddersfield District League.

He said: “I played in midfield and was an energetic player but 18 months ago I realised my heart was beating really fast during a game.

Lee Orton with Aimbry shirt signed by teammates
Lee Orton with Aimbry shirt signed by teammates
 

“I went to the doctor and he referred me to a specialist, but despite all the tests nothing definite was found.

“They put me on a course of beta blockers to slow down my heart rate and told me to take it easy.

“I had 12 months out of the game but went back to training in the summer and everything was fine.

“Now I realise as regards football, that’s it. The doctors have said I can step things up with walking and exercise and may even be able to kick a ball about in the future, but nothing too strenuous.

But I know that I have played my last game.

“I just want to get fit and get back to work, and also to thank Mark and the paramedics for what they did to save me.”

He received many messages of support not only from his Aimbry teammates but also from Manchester City’s Patrick Vieira, head of elite development at the Premiership club.

Lee also has another goal.

He wants to look at setting up a charity or trust fund to try and raise cash so that emergency defibrillators could be available at sports grounds and complexes across Huddersfield.

“It would be a great way of saying thanks to those who helped me and to ensure other people could be saved in the future,” he said.