Basketball In Europe
The European Basketball Community lost one of its most remarkable members on Friday, as former Poland international Malgorzata Dydek passed away in Brisbane, Australia.
The 37 year old, who lived in Australia with her husband and two sons, coached a women's team in the domestic league.
She had suffered a heart attack on May 19 and had since been in a medically-induced coma.
"It makes me very sad to hear about a member of our basketball family passing away" said FIBA Europe Secretary General Nar Zanolin "our thoughts are with her family in Australia."
FIBA Europe President Olafur Rafnsson added: "Malgorzata was one of the great representatives of our sport. It is shocking to lose her at such a young age."
Dydek is survived by her husband, David, and two sons, three-year-old David and seven-month-old Alex.
Dydek had only ended her active career after EuroBasket 2007, when she last represented her country in the Additional Qualifying Round when they narrowly missed out on qualifying for the Final stage of the tournament.
She played numerous times for her country, including 1999 when Poland hosted the EuroBasket Women.
At that event, Dydek averaged a tournament best 19.3 points and 9.4 rebounds.
The Poles won the gold medal at that tournament, beating France 59-56 in the Final when Dydek had 19 points and 11 boards.
One of her opponents in that game, French point guard Yannick Souvré who is now the FIBA Europe Properties Managing Director, also gave her condolences to the family: "I have known Margo for so long and it is really hard to believe she is not with us anymore. I want to express my deepest sympathy for her husband, her sons and the rest of her family."
in 2000, Dydek led Poland when they played at the Olympics in Sydney.
She first played in a top European club competition in 1993 with Poznan outfit TS Olimpia in the Liliana Ronchetti Cup.
Dydek was a regular contender in the EuroLeague Women where she played for French outfit USV Olympic (Valenciennes) in 1995 and '96, Spanish team Pool Getafe in 1997 and '98 and Lotos Gdynia from 1999 through 2005.
Her last European clubs were UMMC Ekaterinburg in 2006 and Ros Casares in 2007.