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Lyster tells how wife's first aid know-how saved him

Michael Lyster on the set of The Sunday Game

RTÉ sports anchor Michael Lyster has told how his wife "kept him alive" with her first aid knowledge after he suffered a sudden heart attack at home.

The 61-year-old, who fronts The Sunday Game, is recovering after undergoing heart surgery following a cardiac arrest incident at his Dublin home earlier this month.

Speaking to RTÉ's Today with Sean O'Rourke programme yesterday, Lyster said his dramatic health scare had occurred after he had spent the day at Portumna playing golf with friends.

He had just been driven home by his friend and fellow sports journalist Vincent Hogan when he fell ill without warning.

Moments earlier, Lyster had realised he had left his mobile phone in Hogan's car.

“I rang him from the house phone and said ‘Hogie, I've left my phone in the car, would you mind just swinging back?'. He was greeted with the sight of me lying on the floor,” he recalled.

Hogan shouted for Lyster's wife Anne, who immediately rushed downstairs and began doing CPR on her stricken husband.

An emotional Lyster said: “The ambulance took around 10 minutes to arrive and Anne was basically keeping me alive at that stage. Even as the ambulance pulled up outside the house, they were on the phone to Vincent saying ‘We're outside, but tell her not to stop'.”

“[Anne] had done the first-aid courses and the fact she knew what to do kept me alive. She saved my life because 10 minutes would have been too long,” he added.

In hospital, Lyster had a defibrillator fitted by surgeons to give his heart “a bit of a kick-start” if necessary in the future.

“It has been a rough couple of weeks. I'm not clear yet but getting there and I'm still above ground anyway which is the most important thing,” he said, revealing that the experience had made him “very aware of the broader picture of life, how things can suddenly be snatched away from you”.

Lyster also confirmed that he hopes to return to our television screens within weeks.

The popular personality said that during his recuperation he has been inundated with messages of goodwill from GAA fans as well as his show's panellists, Joe Brolly and Pat Spillane.

“Joe Brolly has sent me several texts. In fact he sent me one the other night again, which was an order basically, ‘You mind yourself'. That's a recurring text from Joe,” he said.

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