Well, that is just the ending to the story, that everyone knows.
What a lot of people don't remember is that this guy was one of the brightest stars of Indian badminton that ever lived.
Syed Modi, born Syed Mehdi, was on his way to taking over from Padukone as the best ever Indian player.
His touch-play was legendary. Those who witnessed him play or had the pleasure of playing with him, could attest to the fact that his skills and artistry were second to none in the world.
At the time, there was this expectation that if Syed Modi could just get his physical shape and stamina to the level needed to last gruelling sets in international tourneys, he would be a world class player, no question. Remember, it was the 15-point system at the time, and that meant you needed to have the stamina of a horse and the speed to match it!
The potential and the excitement that his game provided to all the Indians and followers from other countries, made his unfortunate death an even more tragic happening than otherwise. India never did unearth anyone else with his particular talent of making poetry on the court. For that matter, the game was changing forever, and I don't think we have seen a player with such subtle touch and skill ever since.
Syed and his wife Amita (a national badminton champion herself) in happier times.