Thai cave mission successfully rescues soccer team and their coach

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Thai cave mission successfully rescues soccer team and their coach

The father of a cave-diving Australian doctor died on Wednesday, shortly after his son played a key role in rescuing a boys' soccer team trapped in a cave for two weeks in northern Thailand.

Eight boys were rescued in two separate missions and brought to a hospital in the nearby city of Chiang Rai all in good condition, according to public health officials. They'll be allowed to enter the room if tests show the boys are free of infection.

The second group of four rescued Monday, 12-14, also had low body temperatures and one had an irregular heartbeat, but by Tuesday morning all four boys were normal, Jesada said. They spent nine days in darkness until two British divers found them, before their drawn-out rescue that captivated global attention.

The 'Wild Boars, ' aged between 11 and 16, and their 25-year-old coach were trapped on June 23 while exploring a cave complex in the province of Chiang Rai when a downpour flooded the passageways.

They are in good physical and mental health, say doctors, despite a harrowing 18 days inside the dank, dark cave before a risky rescue operation that was dubbed "Mission: Impossible".

The submarine has been dubbed "Wild Boar, ' named after the young boys" soccer team.

Jesada Chokdumrongsuk said that the boys are "healthy and smiling", he added: "the kids are footballers so they have high immune systems".

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The Thai navy SEAL unit, which has been overseeing the rescue, confirmed on its Facebook page that the total number of boys brought out was eight.

1 NEWS' Kimberlee Downs with the latest from Chiang Rai, as four boys and their football coach await rescue. Four boys and the coach are still deep inside, and authorities have indicated they're continuing with their so-far successful effort to bring the boys out guided by experienced divers.

Even as a massive operation is underway to rescue the remaining members of the Thai soccer team trapped in a flooded cave, a diver involved with the mission highlighted the risks involved in carrying out the rescue.

For more than a week, officials have been pumping millions of gallons of water out of the cave, trying to combat heavy rains on Sunday and Monday.

Eight boys have so far been rescued from the cave, four on Sunday and another four on Monday.

The operation included stashing tanks of air on the long route to safety, a process that took hours to set up between rescue missions. He said he left the equipment there in case rescuers could use it in the future. "We can see that everything is okay as they're eating well", said Thongchai Lertwilairattanapong, Inspector General of the Public Health Ministry.

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