Mirabai Chanu bags gold on injury comeback

Mirabai Chanu made a strong comeback from injury by bagging a gold medal at the EGAT Cup in Thailand.

The lower back injury kept Chanu out of action for more than half of 2018.   -  AP Photo

Former World champion Mirabai Chanu won a gold medal in the women's 49kg category in the EGAT Cup international weightlifting championships, an Olympic qualifying event, here on Thursday.

Mirabai lifted 82kg in snatch and 110kg in clean and jerk to total 192kg and take the gold medal on her return to competition after a nine-month lay-off due to an injury. She had won the gold medal in her last appearance, at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games in 2018.

 

Mirabai got the better of Rio Olympics bronze medallist Miyake Hiromi (80kg, 103kg, 183kg) of Japan and Commonwealth Games 53kg silver medallist Loa Dika Toua (78kg, 101kg, 179kg) of Papua New Guinea, who finished second and third respectively in the silver level qualifying event.

This was the first of the six Olympic qualifying events for Mirabai, who would take part in a gold level qualifying event – the Asian championships – in April in the first semester.

According to the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) Olympics qualification criteria, an athlete must participate in six eligible events in three periods – November 1, 2018 to April 30, 2019; May 1, 2019 to October 31, 2019 and November 1, 2019 to April 30, 2020. Points gathered from these events would help a lifter improve his/her rank for Olympics qualification.

Every athlete has to participate in at least one event in the each of these periods. He/She also needs to participate in at least one gold level and either one gold level or one silver level event during the one-and-a-half year's time-frame.