Katryna Esposito wins the second IZIBET Elite Athlete Award for 2024

National Lottery plc and the Malta Sports Journalists Association (MSJA) are pleased to announce that Katryna Esposito won the second IZIBET Elite Athlete Award for 2024, covering the months of March and April.

Katryna Esposito, aged 23, was on top of the podium at the Commonwealth Judo Championships hosted in Malta. The gold medal won by Katryna Esposito in the Women’s 48 kg Category was the first one ever won in judo for Malta in such a competition.

During this event, Esposito was preparing for the coming Olympics’ qualifying events and working to improve her performance throughout this year. Katryna Esposito’s success came after a five-month stoppage from training as she underwent a surgery in September, following her injury during the Games for Small States of Europe (GSSE 2023).

Franco de Gabriele, Chief Commercial Officer of IZI Group commented on the extraordinary results obtained by Katryna Esposito. “It is encouraging to witness such remarkable results at the international level. Behind these results are endless hours of hard work and sacrifice. These results augur well for future results. Malta has always nurtured talented Judo athletes and what Katryna is achieving is nothing short of extraordinary. We are happy to be supporting athletes such as Katryna that are committed and aspire to reach excellence in their sports discipline”.

Sandro Micallef, President of the Malta Sports Journalists Association said: “I’m very satisfied that this award went to Katryna Esposito. Katryna had a very difficult year as after the Games for Small States of Europe, due to a knee injury, had to undergo an ACL surgery. An interesting fact to mention is that the surgery was done by her father who happens to be a surgeon specialised in such operations. Katryna’s recovery was very impressive, as much as she started training much earlier than expected. Esposito’s physical recovery can be considered inspirational to other athletes who face such difficult circumstances.”

The IZIBET Elite Athlete Award recognises exceptional performances by local athletes and is awarded every two months.

A selection board composed of sports journalists and sports observers is responsible for evaluating the athlete’s achievements during the designated review periods, ensuring a fair and thorough assessment process.

In the meantime, the official website of the Malta Sports Journalists Association https://www.maltasportsjournalists.com/ provides the rules and regulations governing the award.

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