Weightlifting eyes Rio Olympics

IN the wake of their performance at the Pacific Games, weightlifting will work on maximising on their experience as they bid to qualify for the Rio Olympics next year.

A host of athletes will once again depart our shores to compete in the coming months to compete in the Commonwealth Youth Games, Commonwealth Championships and the World Championships in Houstan USA to compete in their respective categories.

On the back of the performance in Port Moresby, weightlifting section manager Vaciseva Rokotunaceva said the lifters “gave their best.”

“All teams came prepared and I am glad that we have contributed to team Fiji’s success. We had tough competition from Papua New Guinea who maximised the use of the weightlifting institute. Samoa has been a powerhouse in weightlifting and have excellent facility likewise Australia and New Zealand.

“It (weightlifting) is a very costly sport as every set of training weights costs $5000.

“Given the limited facilities that we have, we have been able to produce a respectable result.”

Weightlifting won Fiji’s first gold medal at the Pacific Games and contributed a total of 4 gold, 4 silver and 6 bronze to the overall medal tally in Port Moresby.

She said with Fiji scheduled to host the Oceania Weightlifting championships next year, weightlifting hope to be able to secure new equipment and set up weightlifting gyms around the country in their efforts to develop the sport at both grassroots and the elite level.

* Pacific Games coverage courtesy of BSP