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Sarno, Macrohon shoot for Olympic qualifying points

Vannesa Sarno and Kristel Macrohon will close the Philippines’ campaign when they compete in the women’s 71-kilogram event at the 2022 IWF World Weightlifting Championships Tuesday morning (Manila time).

Sarno and Macrohon are not expected to duplicate the three-gold medal performance of Tokyo Olympics champion Hidilyn Diaz in the women’s 55-kg division.

Samahang Weightlifting ng Pilipinas president Monico Puentevella said that he wanted the lifters to not push themselves too hard, reminding them the main objective is to get some points for the upcoming Paris 2024 Olympics.

He also said Sarno, a former Asian champion, will compete despite suffering an injury two months ago.

“We’ll find out how they will do but the important thing here is that they get qualification points. At the very least, they should get into the top 10,” Puentevella said.

“Sarno suffered an injury two months ago because she overtrained. I don’t think she’s at her best but she will try to compete.”

“If Macrohon gets into the top 10, good for us because we still have more competitions to join before the Olympics,” he added.

Apart from Diaz’s success, other Filipinos struggled.

Elreen Ando wasn’t able to complete her clean-and-jerk in the women’s 59-kg, forcing her to retire in the tournament.

Nestor Colonia placed seventh overall in the men’s 59-kg with a total lift of 243 kgs while John Cezina was in 10th place of the men’s 61-kg after lifting 280kgs.

Lovely Inan placed 13th in the women’s 49-kg event after a total lift of 178 kgs while Rosegie Ramos was at 17th in the same category with a total lift of 170 kgs.

Dave Pacaldo was 18th in the men’s 67-kg division after lifting a total of 290 kgs.

This year’s World Weightlifting Championships is the first of the five tournaments the Philippines can join in order to earn points for the Summer Games.

“Our objective is to accumulate points for the Paris Olympics and not necessarily win medals here,” Puentevella said.

“You can get the medal in the Olympics. Hidilyn got the gold here because she’s good but the kids here are here for experience.”

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