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Hidilyn, weightlifters upbeat in worlds

Nine of the county’ premier weightlifters — bannered by Tokyo Olympics gold medalist Hidilyn Diaz — are ripe and ready to earn precious Olympic qualifying points when they see action in the 2022 IWF World Championships in Bogota, Colombia.

Samahang Weightlifting ng Pilipinas president Monico Puentevella said that while making the podium is on top of their agenda, securing premium points is the more realistic goal in the 5 to 16 December event in the Colombian capital.

“We are here to get points, not necessarily win because what we are aiming for is the Olympics, not the qualifying competitions,” Puentevella said as the association targets the participation of several bets to the Paris 2024 Olympics.

“We’re not just here to get medals but qualify for the Olympics as well,” he said.

Diaz will be at the forefront as she competes in the women’s 55-kilogram as well as Olympian Elreen Ando (women’s 59kg) and Vanessa Sarno (women’s 71kg).

Nestor Colonia (men’s 55kg), Rosegie Ramos and Lovely Inan (women’s 49kg), John Ceniza (men’s 61kg), Dave Lloyd Pacaldo (men’s 67kg) and Kristel Macrohon (women’s 71kg) are also expected to bring out their best.

Puentevella said everyone has an equal chance of not only getting points but also bringing home a medal.”

“For now, I will say I will be rooting for them all. That’s why they are sent here because I think they have a chance,” Puentevella said.

Team Philippines is doing fine in terms of diet, according to Puentevella.

“There’s no need to avoid anything as long as they eat healthily. Hidilyn’s nutritionist, Dr. Jeanneth Aro and her psychologist, Dr. Karen Trinidad are here to assist them.”

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