Weightlifting: African Championships – Tunis, Tunisia May 11-20 |17 May 2023
Three bronze medals for Ruby Malvina
Local lifter Ruby Malvina on Monday won three bronze medals in the women’s 64kg category at the ongoing African Weightlifting Championships in Tunis, Tunisia, after finishing third behind two lifters from the host country.
Her total of 187kg after snatching 80kg and lifting 107kg in clean and jerk placed her third behind Jawaher Gesmi who snatched 86kg and lifted 107kg in clean and jerk for a total of 193kg to finish second in the group, and winner Chaima Rhamouni who snatched 90kg and lifted 109kg in clean and jerk for a total of 199kg.
Seychelles’ other lifter Joelita Coloma was expected to be in action yesterday in the 76kg category.
The event which is being hosted by the Weightlifting Federation of Africa (WFA) is also part of the qualification process for African countries at the Games of the XXXIII Olympiad which will take place in Paris, France from July 26 to August 11, 2024.
At last year’s competition, Coloma who competes in the 76kg category, won three silver medals after snatching 80kg and lifting 100k in clean and jerk for a total 180kg, while Malvina, despite finishing fourth overall in her category, her performance of 105kg in clean and jerk was enough to earn her a gold medal at the African Nation Cup which was taking place simultaneously.
One of the highlights of this year’s competition was on Monday when a weightlifter from Europe, who lost an Olympic qualifying opportunity when an Armenian burned the Azerbaijan flag, finished first in the African Championships.
Isa Rustamov, 23, made a career-best effort to finish ahead of eight African competitors in the men’s 67kg category with a total that would have earned him a bronze medal at the European Championships last month.
But Rustamov did not lift in Yerevan, the Armenian capital, because the Azerbaijan team withdrew before a lift was made after the controversial flag-burning incident at the opening ceremony.
Azerbaijan and Armenia have been involved in long-term conflict and Azerbaijan’s government ordered the weightlifting team to fly home.
Because continental championships are qualifiers for Paris 2024, Azerbaijan had lost a chance to improve their rankings, so the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) arranged for the same athletes entered in Yerevan to compete instead in Tunis.