The OFC family is deeply saddened to learn of the sudden passing of New Caledonian player Marcel Hnepeune at age 29.

The captain of the local ASPTT club collapsed during a futsal match against FC Ferrand on Saturday and was unable to be revived, from what is believed to have been a cardiac arrest.

The unexpected event has shocked the New Caledonian football community. It comes only a week after Hnepeune competed in the Melanesian Cup futsal tournament, winning player of the match for an outstanding game against Fiji.

Fédération Calédonienne de Football (FCF) released a statement saying:

“Caledonian Football and Cagou Football are in shock after the sudden death of Marcel Hnepeune, this Saturday, April 22 during the meeting that the international A futsal was playing with his ASPTT team, in the Super League futsal. New Caledonian futsal mourns the one who was one of its very best, and above all a ‘big brother’ who was respected by all. To his family and relatives, to the clans and to his tribe, to the ASPTT club and to the Caledonian Futsal family: FCF, its President Gilles Tavergeux, its Federal Council and its elected Members and its employees send their most sincere condolences and join in the sadness caused at this time of mourning.”

From Oceania Football Center: Marcel’s contribution to the ASPTT team cannot be overstated. Last year, he led his team to victory in both the Caledonian Cup and the Super League championship, achieving a double. He was also a key player in the Caledonian selection, participating in the Oceania Nations Cup in Païta in October 2019, a qualifying phase for the 2020 World Cup.

OFC would like to offer its sincere condolences to Marcel Hnepeune’s family, friends, club and team mates, and all those he inspired with his football ability.