Richmond defender Bachar Houli has revealed his mother, Yamama, is in an intensive care unit in Melbourne battling COVID-19.
Houli decided not to travel with the team up to their Queensland hub in order to be close to his family, including newborn child, and revealed the news to his social media followers on Instagram on Monday.
“I thought I’d share a very quick message and a reminder for myself and everyone out there and more specifically to the Muslim community out there,” Houli said.
“I want to share a personal experience with the current situation that we’re all facing out with the COVID-19. My family has been affected by COVID-19. It’s been a tough time. When you’re restricted and you’re isolated, it’s very touching.
“More specifically, my mother’s been affected a lot. She’s currently in ICU undergoing some heavy treatment. The team in the ICU is taking care of her. Her current state is a mixed one. God knows best her situation.
“What burns and what hurts truly is the fact that no one from her family members can go and visit her, which is very, very tough. Please put yourselves in this position.”
Bachar Houli did not travel with Richmond for Rounds 6 and 7. Darrian Traynor/Getty Images
Houli said he didn’t want people to “feel sorry” him, instead implored followers to understand the threat the coronavirus poses to the community, especially older and more vulnerable members.
“I’m experiencing it right now within my family,” he said. “Please I urge you for the sake of Allah go get tested. If you’re showing any form of symptoms, if you’re not showing any symptoms, please do your bit.
“Please go to the nearest place and go get tested. Do your best to isolate, and we do our best to wipe out this current pandemic.”
Meanwhile, in a statement, Richmond said the club was “continuing to offer Bachar and his family the support they need at this time, and we all hope Yamama recovers from COVID-19 soon”.