Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Weighlifter is Games champion for a second time

WEIGHTLIFTER Amirul Ibrahim Hamizan made good the promise to deliver the first Commonwealth Games gold medal for Malaysia when he won the men’s 56kg competition in style at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium last night.

The 28-year-old Amirul started his gold medal onslaught with confidence and improved on his own Games record of 115kg in the snatch, which he set when he won at the 2002 Manchester Games, with a successful second attempt of 116kg.

Amirul failed to take the record to 118kg after dropping the final lift.
Amirul started well by lifting 135kg in the clean and jerk but there was a momentary scare when he failed at 140kg. But he made sure the men’s 56kg gold medal remained in Malaysia’s hands by lifting 141kg for a total of 257kg.

India’s Dey Sukhan, the 2007 Asian junior championship gold medallist, made a valiant attempt to catch up with Amirul when he raised his total lift to 146kg for clean and jerk after succeeding at 134kg on the first attempt. But he failed to lift the massive weight and settled for silver on 252kg as a jubilant Amirul punched his fists in the air in sheer delight.

Another Indian lifter, Srinivasa Rao, claimed the bronze with a total of 248kg.
A teary-eyed Amirul was glad that he did not give up the sport after he was found guilty of a doping offence three years after winning three gold medals at the 2002 Games.

Amirul had to serve a two-year suspension and watched from home as Mohd Faizal Baharom defended the title for Malaysia in 2006 Melbourne Games.
But four years after that heady morning in Melbourne, Amirul had the chance to atone for his mistake and he did not disappoint.

“I should have been the one defending the title for Malaysia then. I wanted to give up the sport but the coaches persuaded me to give myself a chance,” he said.
“I have to thank the National Sports Council (NSC) and also everyone in the weightlifting family for supporting me through the difficult times.”

The Rompin-born Amirul said that he had to earn a good lead in the snatch as he did not want to pressure himself in the clean and jerk.
“I still have a bit of pain in my thighs because of an old injury and I knew the Indians lifters were desperate to win their country’s first gold,” he said.

“It’s not my best personal effort as I did 265kg at the Beijing Olympics but I’m happy I delivered the gold for Malaysia.”
For his golden effort, Amirul can expect a RM80,000 reward under the NSC incentive scheme. And he will save the money for the future as he is now a married man with a 21-month-old daughter.
Weightlifting can possibly rake in another medal or two for Malaysia with Arrico Jumith and Raihan Yusoff competing in the men’s 62kg and women’s 53kg respectively.


No comments:

Post a Comment