19.03.2018, 02:32
Latvian handball mourns death of Andris Vitols

Former IHF referee and EHF delegate passed away on Saturday 17 March 2018.

Latvian handball mourns death of Andris Vitols

It is the sad duty of the EHF to report the death of Andris Vitols from Latvia, who passed away on Saturday 17 March at the age of 81. Vitols was a former EHF delegate, IHF referee and one of the most prominent Latvian referees in history

To become a referee Andris Vitols was inspired by Janis Grinbergas, the long-time chairman of the IHF PRC. At that time in the handball there was only one referee on the court and already in 1965 Andris Vitols was recognized as the best referee of the Soviet Union championship in Kiev.

Later, he became an IHF referee and formed a pair with Janis Kuzulis. They participated in two Olympic Games and six world championships and were nominated for some of the most important matches.

Vitols finished his impressive refereeing career in 1985 in the match between Denmark and World Selection in Copenhagen.

Later, as an EHF delegate, he officiated many important international matches and was also nominated for two European championships.

From 1977 to 1994, Vitols worked at the Latvian Writers' Union. In 1988, he actively participated in the restoration of the Latvian Olympic Committee. In 2008, on the fringes of the 50-year anniversary of the Latvian Handball, Andris Vitols together with Janis Kuzulis were named the best all-time Latvian referees.

In 2016, Vitols was awarded by the Latvian Handball Federation for his contribution to the development of handball.

The EHF joins the whole of the handball family in offering its sincere condolences to Vitols’ family, friends and colleagues at this difficult time.

The farewell with Andris Vītols will be held on Thursday, 22 March, at 11:00 in the Great Hall of the Riga Crematorium.

TEXT: EHF / br

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