Passages: Six-Time Olympic Water Polo Referee Eugenio Martinez Passes

Photo Courtesy: NCAA

Eugenio Martinez passes away.


Eugenio middle row, far right with the Cuban National team, late 1980s. Photo Courtesy: Osvaldo Garcia (middle row 3rd from right).

Six-time Olympic water polo referee Eugenio Martinez of Cuba has passed away on December 25, 2019 leaving a huge hole in the worldwide water polo community.

Martinez was a former FINA Bureau member from 2013 – 2017 and was a four-time FINA Technical Water Polo Committee member from 2000 – 2003 and 2017 – 2019.

Martinez began refereeing water polo in 1968 after he retired as a player. He covered six Olympic Games between 1972 and 1992 as he began refereeing a match between Germany and the Netherlands in 1972 and ended with the infamous Barcelona 1992 final between Italy and Spain that went to six overtimes. He also officiated at every FINA World Championships beginning with the very first championships in Belgrade in 1973, and ending with the 1994 championships in Rome.

Martinez worked matches at every men’s FINA World Cup until 1995 (excluding 1987) and worked the FINA junior men’s World Championships in 1983, 1985 and 1987.

He was awarded the FINA Silver Pin for his services in 1995.

Eugenio Martinez attended 10 Pan American Games, numerous Caribbean Games and four South American Games. Other accolades included honorary member of the International Association of Water Polo Referees (AIA). He has been a guest speaker and conducted referee schools at more than 30 countries worldwide. He also did a stint as national coach of Kuwait.

Read FINA Media Committee Member Russell McKinnon’s obituary here.

1 comment

  1. avatar

    Mi más sentido pésame para su familia especialmente a su hijo Eugenio a quien envió un fuerte abrazo. Maricarmen at Marimar Travel &Tours.