Lewis Hardcastle: Barrow midfielder retires aged 22 because of heart condition

Lewis Hardcastle
Hardcastle helped Barrow gain promotion back to the English Football League last season

Barrow midfielder Lewis Hardcastle has been forced to end his playing career aged 22 because of a heart condition.

Hardcastle revealed he had been diagnosed with arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy (ARVC).

"My doctor broke the news no young athlete wants to hear, I love football but my life means more," he said on Twitter.external-link

Hardcastle joined Barrow from Blackburn in 2019 and made 69 appearances for the League Two side.

"The doctor told that me that my case was so severe that I needed an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) implanted into my heart to save my life.

"Sadly there was nothing I could have done to avoid the progression of my condition, I just feel that I have been unlucky," he added.

In a club statementexternal-link Barrow said Hardcastle felt unwell last month and had a procedure to treat the condition.

"After he became ill during our game at Salford City last month, investigations uncovered an issue with his heart," the statement said.

"Following the diagnosis of his condition, Lewis underwent a procedure to treat it. However, after further consultations with cardiologists, he has received medical advice which has, devastatingly, left him unable to continue his career.

"The club is doing everything it can to support Lewis and his family at this very difficult time."

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