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Death of Lithuanian referee Zygmantas Rybinas shocks judo world

12 Jan 2021 18:00

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The international refereeing judo community was shaken by a painful loss. Lithuanian Zygmantas Rybinas passed away at the age of 30 years on Monday. Rybinas was a well-known international judo referee. He celebrated his 30th anniversary just before the New Year. Although he wasn’t a referee for so long, he left a deep impression in the hearts of the judo world.

Zygmantas graduated from Kaunas Antanas Smetona Gymnasium in 2010, he entered Kaunas University of Technology. Here he obtained a bachelor's degree in electrical energy technology.

He came to judo training as a child, in 1996, and has always remained loyal to his sport. He achieved sports victories not only on the tatami. In 2016, Rybinas passed the International referee exams in Italy and worked at the major European tournaments. In 2018 he established the Lithuanian Judo Judges Association and became the chairman of the LDF referee commission. Last year, for the merits of judo sport, he was awarded the title of 3 DAN. He refereed the European Open's in Warsaw and Bratislava last year and had already officiated three U23 European Championships. He debuted at World Cup level in Minsk in 2017. Also he refereed at the European Cadet Championships in 2017 in his own city Kaunas.

Zygmantas Rybinas was an extremely friendly, bright and sincere person who could always be relied on and supported by both relatives and colleagues. Zygmantas was a healthy young man until he heard his diagnosis three months ago of cancer.

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