Saudi Weightlifter Takes Home Three Asian Gold Medals
On the first day of the Asian Weightlifting Championship in China, Saudi national Mansour Abdulrahim Al-Saleem won three gold medals in the snap, jerk, and combination moves. The well-deserved victory saw Al-Saleem rank first in the 55-kg category.
The crowd lost it when he managed to lift 122 kilograms and head the standings. When Kazakhstan’s Arli Chontey and Malaysia’s Azroy Hazalwafie followed with 113 kilograms and 112 kilograms, respectively, Al-Saleem knew he had secured the number one spot, as well as a gold medal for his country; the first of three he would win on this day.
In the clean and jerk discipline, Al-Saleem managed to be on top of the board with 140 kilograms. His competition followed with Hazalwafie lifting 136 kilograms, while Sri Lanka’s Dilanka Isuru Kumara was third with 135 kilograms; that secured his second gold medal for the day.
His previous efforts in the past two disciplines saw him secure a whopping 262 kilograms, winning the overall title and his third gold medal in the process.
Al-Saleem is the first athlete from Saudi Arabia to win a gold medal in the Asian Weightlifting Championship.
Mohammed Al-Harbi, the President of the Saudi Weightlifting Federation, thanked the officials and the Saudi people for supporting the growing sport, which led to “such a great achievement.”
Al-Saleem had a magical look of pride in his eyes when he witnessed his country’s flag being raised; moments after, the national anthem was played and the whole delegation sang together in pride. When asked about what he wanted to say after such a ground-breaking victory, Al-Saleem praised the ability of Saudi sportsmen in all international and regional sports sectors.
The competition would still go on for eight more days in China’s eastern city of Ningbo in Zhejiang province. Medals will be distributed across 20 categories; 10 for men and 10 for women.