Ukraine Soccer Player Saves Rival After Frightening Injury (VIDEO)

03/31/2014 02:01 am ET | Updated Mar 31, 2014

It was a do-or-die moment on the soccer field when a player went down and may have stopped breathing. But a quick-thinking opponent stepped in, saved the day and maybe even his rival's life.

The action unfolded during a Ukrainian Premier League match when Oleh Husyev of the Dynamo Kiev took an accidental knee to the face from Denys Boyko, goalkeeper for the Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk, and went down hard.

Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk midfielder Jaba Kankava didn't rush after the ball with most of the rest of the players; instead he raced to his unconscious rival's side. Kankava flipped Husyev over and frantically began sticking his fingers into Husyev's mouth. Husyev's tongue was apparently blocking his airway, leaving him unable to breath.

Others quickly joined the rescue effort, and at one point Kankava screamed and recoiled, holding his hand, probably bitten. But the rescue was a success as a dazed Husyev managed to get up before being taken off the field on a stretcher.

"Football is just a game," reads a message on the Dyanmo website. "Human life is above all and the episode when Oleh Husyev suffered a severe injury proves that. We wish the White-Blues skipper recover as quickly as possible."

The site says Husyev suffered a first-degree concussion, fractured his jaw and lost a tooth.

For another angle on this frightening incident, watch the video below.

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