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Weightlifters hope for Olympic qualification from world championship

It was scheduled to be held in Chongqing, China, but this changed in March due to COVID-19 measures in China. The new location was announced in April.

Asian champion Lại Gia Thành will compete at the World Weightlifting Championship in Colombia on December 5-16. VNA/VNS Photo

The team left yesterday for Bogata, which is hosting the championship from December 5-16.

It was scheduled to be held in Chongqing, China, but this changed in March due to COVID-19 measures in China. The new location was announced in April.

The event serves as qualification for the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris, France.

There are ten weight classes for men ranging from 55kg to over-109kg. The women's range from from 45kg to over-87kg.

"This is an important competition that will give points to athletes on their way to the Paris Olympics 2024," said Nguyễn Huy Hùng from the Weightlifting Department of the Việt Nam Sports Administration.

"All athletes are asked to perform their best to earn positive results for their individual records and take points for team ranking."

The seven-strong team are Lại Gia Thành, Phạm Thị Hồng Thanh, Quàng Thị Tâm, Nguyễn Trần Anh Tuấn, Khổng Mỹ Phượng, Ngô Sơn Đỉnh and Phạm Đình Thi. They are the strongest competitors of their weight categories currently.

Among them, Thành (men's 55kg), Tâm (women's 59kg), Tuấn (men's 61kg), Thanh (women's 64kg) and Phượng (women's 45kg) won gold medals from the Asian Weightlifting Championship in October in Bahrain.

One of the top national athletes, Hoàng Thị Duyên of the women's 59kg, was absent from the world tournament.

According to the coaching board, the Tokyo Olympian has not recovered from her knee injury. She needs to rest and receive treatment to prepare for the next competition.

The injury also prevented the SEA Games champion from meeting expectations at the Bahrain tournament.

The athletes have just completed their training course in Thailand, and coach Huỳnh Hữu Chí said that training in a different environment brought positive achievement for his athletes.

Their results were stably good while their spirit was pushed remarkably. All of them were excited and could not wait to compete.

Việt Nam did not compete in the previous championships because of COVID-19.

Their latest event was in 2019 in Thailand, where Tuấn secured a silver in the men's 55kg; Phượng and Vương Thị Huyền each took a bronze in the women's 45kg.

The team will return in time for the ninth National Sports Games.

The Games' opening ceremony will be held on December 9 in Quảng Ninh Province, the main location. Weightlifting will be organised from December 16-20 in Thanh Hóa Province. VNS

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