Sunday, July 21, 2024

Record-breaking Mirabai Chanu claims India’s first gold at Commonwealth Games

Mirabai Chanu

Birmingham, July 30: Star weightlifter Mirabai Chanu (49kg) went on a record-smashing spree, claiming four of them in a power-packed performance, to claim India’s first gold medal at the Commonwealth Games here on Saturday.
In a remarkable performance, Chanu smashed the Commonwealth and CWG record in snatch.
She obliterated the Games record in clean and jerk as well as total lift.
The former world champion ended with a total lift of 201kg (88kg+113kg), which is far from her personal best.
She equalled her national record lift of 88kg in the snatch section.
The Olympic silver medallist, who has been working on her snatch technique, then attempted the much-anticipated 90kg but couldn’t pull it off.
Sporting her famous ‘lucky’ earrings shaped like the Olympic rings, Chanu lifted more than twice her body weight (109kg, 113kg) in the clean and jerk, in which she holds the world record (119kg).
Her nearest rival in the field, Stella Kingsley of Nigeria, came into the contest with a personal best of 168kg (72kg+96kg), summing up the gulf between her and the rest.
The atmosphere at the NEC arena was electric, pushing the athletes to give their best with the music keeping the fans entertained.
As the MC also pointed out, with Chanu head and shoulders above others, the outing was more about competing with herself than her opponents.
Chanu’s first attempt in snatch was comfortable before she lifted 88kg in the second before leaving 90kg for the third and final attempt. She was not able to record a new personal best but still went into the clean and jerk with a 12kg advantage over Ranaivosoa.
The clean and jerk began on a rather dramatic fashion with Bangladesh’s Marija Akhter falling on the floor after a failed attempt for 70kg.
With her nearest rivals attempting 15kgs less than Chanu, the result was a foregone conclusion.
The battle for silver and bronze went down to the wire with Kingsley, Kaminski and Ranaivosa battling it out.
It was a heartbreaking end for the Nigerian lifter Kingsley whose 98kg attempt was declared as a no lift following a premature celebration.
Chanu lifted 109kg comfortably in her first attempt before going for 113kg in the second.
She did not risk matching her world record of 119kg and went for 115 kg in her final lift, but missed.
Mauritian weightlifter Marie Hanitra Roilya Ranaivosoa 172kg (76kg+96kg) won the silver.
Hannah Kaminski of Canada 171 kg (74kg+97kg) also finished on the podium.
With this Chanu added a third CWG medal to her kitty, having won silver and gold in the Glasgow and Gold Coast editions respectively. (PTI)