Rio de Janeiro: Chinese lifter Long Qingquan claimed his second Olympic gold medal, winning the men’s 56 kg weightlifting event with a world record total lift of 307kg. The 25-year-old Long, the 2008 Olympic gold medallist, overcame a stiff challenge from defending champion Om Yun Chaol of North Korea, reports Xinhua.
Long hoisted 137kg in snatch and 170kg in jerk to go past the previous world best of 305kg set by Turkish legend Halil Mutlu 16 years ago in the Sydney 2000 Games. Om, 24, lifted 134kg and jerked 169kg for a combined lift of 303kg to settle for the silver medal.
Long is the first weightlifter with eight years between his first and second Olympic gold medal, in any men’s and women’s weightlifting event. “I am really happy. I am really proud. I came to this competition with two dreams: to win the competition and break the world record and I did both,” Long said after winning on Sunday.
“I have prepared for the competition for four years because I did not get to compete in the (London) 2012 Olympic Games. After four years I did it,” said Long. Om was beaten for the first time in a major competition since he won this event at the 2012 London Olympics. “I do not feel satisfied. I was hoping for gold. I put a lot of effort in. I just did not win,” Om said on SUnday.
“I never thought that Long could lift 170kg, because he never did that in the training before,” said Yu Jie, the head coach of the men’s team. “He was perfect in the power, the technic and the psychology. He was amazing today.” Yu added. Sinphet Kuraithong of Thailand took bronze with 289kg, becoming the first male weightlifter from his nation to win a medal at the Olympic Games. “I did not expect that I would get a medal, but I just did what I had practiced.” Kruaithong said. –IANS
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