Senior weightlifters including defending champion Mirabai Chanu, Common Wealth Gold medalist Sathish Sivalingam and Venkat Rahul Ragala will miss this year’s World Weightlifting Championships, choosing to continue their rehabilitation program instead.
The World Championship is one of the ten qualifying events for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. India will be fielding its B team, comprising mostly of junior lifters, in the event scheduled to be held in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan from November 1.
The World Championship will see women wrestler Rakhi Halder in the 63kg category, who was in action at the Asian Games but could not register a valid lift.
Jhilli Dalabehera will be in the reckoning for the 49kg Women’s category. She bagged the bronze medal in the 2018 IWF Junior World Weightlifting Championships at Tashkent in July.
Achinta Shueli, who came in to limelight after he won a gold medal for Maharashtra at the Khelo India School Games, will be seen in action in the 73kg category at the Championships.
In the Men’s 81 kg Ajay Singh Shekhawat will spearhead India’s challenge in the absence of Sathish Sivalingam who too opted for rehabilitation. Ajay, also took part in the Asian Games, but couldn’t win a medal and finished 5th in the overall standings.
Gurdeep Singh, who’s broken the national record in the 105kg category three times at the last World Championships in Anaheim, USA, will be in fray in the +109 kg category. He last featured in the Common Wealth Games but couldn’t muster a medal.
None of the senior players viz. Punam Yadav, Chanu, Sivalingam, Vikas Thakur, Venkat Rahul will be in action and will probably be seen in action at the Asian Championship to be held in China in April next year.
The Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna awardee, Mirabai, is undergoing rehabilitation after the treatment for her lower-back injury. She also missed the Asian Games owing to the injury. While the others are in the mix for rehabilitation, as they could not give rest to their bodies after the Common Wealth Games and Asian Games earlier this year.
About the Author
Suposh Sharma, keenly follows Hockey, Athletics, and other Olympic sports. He also has a penchant for writing humour and is an avid traveller