Talha aims to finish at the victory podium in Tokyo Olympics weightlifting

By our correspondent

ISLAMABAD: Eying a spot in top three the country’s premier weightlifter and Asian Championship bronze medallist Talha Talib will fly out of Lahore for Tokyo on Wednesday (tomorrow) to feature in the Olympic Games which will be formally opened on July 23.

The rookie weightlifting sensation from Gujranwala will compete in the 67kg competition on July 25. Talha is regarded as a strong athlete and his constant rise in the international circuit is the proof of his passion and struggle for achieving glory in the international circuit.

In the Tashkent Asian Championship, he snatched bronze with a weight of 148kg. He finished his clean and jerk with 167kg which earned him his best total of 315kg. In the Olympics he is determined to do something different. “I am training hard and will try to finish in the top three,” Talha said.

“Although I lifted 167kg in clean and jerk in Asian Championship, in practice now I lift 175kg and InshaAllah I will try to lift a couple of kilograms more in the Olympics. I will also try to pull off the best snatch performance which will help reach a good total in the end,” Talha said.

The 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games bronze medallist is very close to the world’s best lot in snatch and what he needs is to boost his clean and jerk. Talha said that he was training hard before it was confirmed that he would be playing in the Tokyo Games on IOC place.

“I was training hard even before I knew that I would get a ticket for the Olympics. And when I came to know that I would go to Tokyo I boosted my training and now feel in top shape,” Talha said.

One thing which can surprise Talha is the international standard weights in Tokyo. In Gujranawala he is training with sub-standard weights and ‘The News’ has learnt that he is yet to receive the weights promised by the Pakistan Sports Board (PSB).

Talha will be accompanied by his coach cum manager Hafiz Imran Butt, who is also the president of the Pakistan Weightlifting Federation (PWF). Three shooters, two swimmers and shuttler Mahoor Shahzad have already reached Tokyo.

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