West Ham player Dylan Tombides dies at age 20 after losing battle with cancer


Australian Dylan Tombides, left, in action during the AFC U-22 Championship Group C match between Australia and Kuwait. Tombides, who had testicular cancer, died Friday morning at age 20. (Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images)

Dylan Tombides, an Australian soccer player who played professionally for West Ham, died Friday morning following a three-year battle with testicular cancer.

Tombides, 20, was first diagnosed with the cancer after playing for Australia in the 2011 Under-17 World Cup in Mexico when a random drug test uncovered a tumor.

The striker joined West Ham as a 15-year-old and made his professional debut for the club in 2012.

“Dylan was respected by everyone who knew him for his intelligent views on the game and his larger than life character,” West Ham said in a statement. “He was a loving son, amazing brother and well-respected member of the West Ham squad. He will be hugely missed by everyone who had the honour of knowing him.”

The club announced that Tombides will be honored by a minute’s applause ahead of Saturday’s Premier League match against Crystal Palace. The players will also wear black armbands in his memory.

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