SEA Games: Vietnam opened the gold rush
The weightlifting competition of the SEA Games was held from November 18-20 at the Dempo Sport Complex in Palembang, Indonesia.
Despite many changes in personnel, Vietnamese weightlifters were targeting gold medals.
The present team consisted of young and inexperienced members including Thach Kim Tuan, Tran Le Quoc Toan and Nguyen Thi Phuong Loan.
The main national medal-winning hope, Hoang Anh Tuan, who pocketed a Beijing Olympics silver medal, was banned for doping at the National Sport Games last November.
His female teammate Ngo Thi Hanh was also be absent from the Games for the same reason, while veterans Nguyen Thi Thiet, Ngo Thi Nga, Khuat Minh Hai and Nguyen Manh Thang have all retired.
Vietnam had two candidates for the first gold of weightlifting competition of the SEA Games in 56 kg. Tuan and Toan were considered gold medal contenders.
Kim Tuan snatched a gold medal at the Singapore Youth Olympics in October 2010. He also won three gold medals at the Asian Youth Weightlifting Championship in Thailand in September. His lift of 277kg set a new Youth World Record. In Paris Thach Kim Tuan failed to break into the top three despite promising training results. In the snatch event, managed 125kg and Indonesia brought him bronze in Total by 124 kg and 147 kg.
The other, Toan, who is training in Bulgaria, was expected to return home fresh from his two-month course. Tran Le Quoc Toan successfully pocketed a bronze medal from the World Weightlifting Championships in Paris. He lifted 125kg in the Snatch and ranked third. The 22-year-old athlete lifted 150kg in the Clean and Jerk to achieve a fourth with a Total of 275kg, coming in just 1kg behind bronze medallist Hristov Valentine (AZE).
After such a strong performance in his international debut Toan won the Sea Games, with 125kg in the Snatch, 155kg in the Clean and Jerk and 280kg in the Total.
Kim Tuan and Toan were fighting against defending champion Jadi Setiadi from Indonesia. Setiadi lifted 274kg to win gold in Laos two years ago. Setiadi improved further 4kg, but his development helped him to reach the silver medal.
Check out the results here: http://apps.seag2011.com/rs2011/bm/cm/schedule_type_3.aspx?sid=1&sname=Weightlifting&scode=wl&fid=5