Jeanette Zacarias Zapata, an 18-year-old professional boxer from Aguascalientes, died five days after being knocked out in the fourth round of a fight in Montreal, Canada.
Zacarias, who was making her first fight outside of Mexico and the sixth of her career, had posted various messages on social media prior to the fight, expressing her excitement at being in Canada.
Facing Marie Pier Houle, an experienced 31-year-old undefeated welterweight, Zacarias looked comfortable in the first three rounds, but was knocked to the floor by her opponent in the fourth. She never got up and began to have convulsions, requiring immediate treatment in the ring before she was rushed to hospital. Zacarias never regained consciousness before succumbing at Sacré-Cœur-de-Montréal Hospital, reports said. The Quebec Coroner’s Office is investigating the causes and circumstances of the athlete’s death, reports said.
Zacarias began boxing at age of 13, encouraged by her father and brothers. Her father said that his daughter was “prepared” for the fight and that boxing “can be like this,” noting that “it could have been the other girl (that died).”
Zacarias’ husband, Jovanni Martinez, was ringside throughout the fatal bout.