The sudden death of Alfredo Quintana at the age of 32 left the handball industry in shock • The goalkeeper, a native of Cuba who became a sensation in Porto, had a heart attack during training and will forever be remembered as bringing the Portuguese team back to the forefront • Former player Idan Maimon Athletes are assigned
World sport has known many tragedies, ones that have also caused national mourning.
The road accident in which "Mozart of basketball" Drazen Petrovic was killed in 1993, the 22-year-old death of Sevilla footballer Antonio Puerta during a game in 2007, the helicopter accident that interrupted the life of Kobe Bryant in January last year.
These tragic events are of course just the tip of the iceberg.
Portugal is currently facing its own sporting disaster, following the death of handball goalkeeper Alfredo Quintana.
Last Monday, during a training session at the Dragao Hall, Porto's 32 - year - old goalkeeper had a heart attack, and since then doctors in the intensive care unit at Sao Zhao Hospital have been trying to save his life.
Unfortunately, a few days later they had to give up.
Beyond his immense talent, his Cinderella story makes his death even more painful.
Quintana (2.01 meters) is a Cuban general born in Havana.
He grew up in the Industrial Club of the capital and broke into the world at the 2010 Pan-American Championships in Chile.
In the semi-finals, his team Cuba lost to Argentina, in a game that was stopped due to an anonymous call warning of a bomb placed in the hall.
Those who quickly recognized his talent were the professionals of Porto, one of the three best teams in Portugal.
Since then, Quintana has won six championships, and his performance in the league has not gone unnoticed by the Portuguese Handball Association and Rolando Freitas, who in 2014 was the national team coach and now the professional director of the Israeli Handball Association.
He opened the door to Quintana, who became a Portuguese citizen that year.
With Quintana, not only Porto has positioned itself as a legitimate team in the Champions League, but also the Portuguese team, which in 2020 returned for the first time in 14 years to the European Championship (finished sixth).
In early 2021, for the first time in 18 years, they also returned to the World Championships, which they finished in tenth place on Egyptian soil.
"Severe psychological injury"
"We will never forget you," they wrote in his memory in Porto, who decided to put the number 1 shirt out of use, "you are a real dragon."
The two best players in the world, the Danish Mikal Hansen and the Frenchman Nikola Krabatic, shared publicity in his memory.
Hansen posted a heartbroken emoji, while Krabatic wrote on his Instagram page: "Terrible news."
The World Handball Federation (IHF) also said goodbye: "Thank you for the memories, Alfredo."
"The damage is enormous, it is a very difficult psychological situation, for which the best professionals must be recruited to keep the system functioning," Hapoel Rishon LeZion coach Idan Maimon told Israel Today, who himself experienced trauma when one of his players, Novak Bushkovich, End of his life.
According to Maimon, "A player who was with you two days ago in the locker room and suddenly passes away is a situation that is impossible to describe. It is a trauma for the whole system. It is difficult to lift the players, because the sporting value is simply irrelevant in those moments."
"Right now we're concentrating on picking up the people, long before the professional section," Maimon adds. "He did not expect a difficult event like that of Quintana. The sudden death is far beyond sports. The game is completely dwarfed by human life."
"Examine whether it occurs in Corona"
He was a member of the Maimon team in Rishon LeZion.
"In most cases of cardiac arrest in athletes, the cause is a congenital or developmental defect, but among other things it is important to also examine whether Quintana has been diagnosed in Corona," the senior doctor told Israel Today. "Full activity. One of the effects of corona infection may be an enlargement of the heart muscle, which is a major cause of cardiac arrest in athletes. We have entered a new era in which all of our baseline tests may need to be changed due to the effects of the virus."
"These events happen, even at the highest levels, and usually it ends badly," adds Dr. Leber. They are vital and can save lives. "