Olympics and Judo star MARICET ESPINOSA dies aged 34 after heart attack during breast enlargement surgery

Thursday, January 25, 2024
 – Olympic judoka star, Maricet Gonzalez Espinosa has passed away aged just 34 after suffering a heart attack, and other complications after having breast enlargement surgery

Maricet Espinosa Gonzalez, who competed at the 2016 Olympics, had breast enlargement surgery on January 21 before tragically suffering complications according to local media. She was a double Pan American Judo champion, before retiring from the sport in 2017.

Nicknamed 'La Mole', Espinosa represented Cuba at the 2016 Olympics in Brazil in the women's 63kg competition. She beat Nepalese judoka Phupu Lhamu Khatri in the first round, before suffering defeat to Israel's Yarden Gerbi in the second round.

The Manuel Fajardo Cuban Sports University, which is well-known for producing Olympic athletes, paid tribute to Espinosa on their Facebook page. "It is with great pain that the Cuban university sports community receives the news of the death of the outstanding Cuban judoka Maricet Espinosa Gonzalez," they wrote.

"'La Mole'... stood out as a member of our national judo team, achieving two titles and a Pan American silver, all in the -63kg category. On behalf of our teachers, workers and students we extend our deepest condolences to their families, friends and colleagues."

Sports journalist Robiel Vega added: "It is with terrible pain that I received the sad news of the death of Maricet Espinosa, 'La Mole', as she was known in the world of judo since she was just a child.

"She was an excellent athlete and a former National Team member. I send my deepest condolences to her friends and family. Rest in peace, champion."

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