World champion weightlifter Mirabai Chanu has resumed her weight training after staying away from it for about five weeks due to lower back pain .
A World and Commonwealth Games title holder in women’s 48kg , Mirabai is tipped to be a medal hope for the country in the upcoming Asian Games, where India has not won a weightlifting medal in 24 years.
Olympic bronze medallist Karnam Malleswari last won a medal, a silver in 63kg, for the country in the 1998 Bangkok Asian Games.
According to National chief coach Vijay Sharma, Mirabai resumed her weight training on Wednesday. “For Mira, the weight will increase 10 per cent every day for five-six days. If she does not feel any pain after doing 50 to 60 per cent, then she will continue with her training for the Asian Games,” Sharma said.
Backed by Olympic Gold Quest, Mirabai has shifted to Mumbai to train under the supervision of renowned sports physiotherapist Heath Matthews.
“Mira is training as per Matthew’s advice and her progress is being closely monitored. The next few days will be very crucial for her. She is a strong contender for a medal and we are hoping for the best,” added Sharma.
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India has selected a five-member team – including Sathish Kumar Sivalingam, Ajay Singh (77kg) and Vikas Thakur (94kg) in men’s section and Mirabai (48kg) and Rakhi Halder (63kg) in women – for the Jakarta Asian Games, starting from August 18.
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