Weightlifting Day Ahead – two medal events on tap after a two-day break

Men’s 81kg world record holder and reigning world champion from 2019 Lü Xiaojun of China is the odds-on favorite to win gold

Tokyo 2020 Olympics - Weightlifting Training - Tokyo International Forum, Tokyo, Japan - July 23, 2021 General view during training REUTERS/Edgard Garrido
Tokyo 2020 Olympics - Weightlifting Training - Tokyo International Forum, Tokyo, Japan - July 23, 2021 General view during training REUTERS/Edgard Garrido

Who’s on the mat

Men’s 81kg and 96kg events.

What to look out for

In the men’s 81kg, world record holder and reigning world champion from 2019 Lü Xiaojun of China is the odds-on favorite to win. His main rivals will be world bronze medalist Brayan Rodallegas from Colombia and Rejepbaý Rejepow from Turkmenistan, who will seek to emulate his compatriot Polina Guryeva and earn a second ever Olympic medal for his country.

As for the men’s 96kg, the gold will likely be a three-way race between world silver medalist Qatari Fares El-Bakh, world bronze medalist Georgian Anton Pliesnoi and Belarusian Yauheni Tsikhantsou, the 2019 world champion in a heavier weight class.

Competition schedule (Japan Standard Time)

♦ 11:50am: 81kg Group B

♦ 11:50am: 96kg Group B

♦ 3:50pm: 81kg Group A

♦ 7:50pm: 96kg Group A

Story of the day

Heavy favorite Shi Zhiyong of China won gold in dominant fashion in the men’s 73kg event on Wednesday. Zhiyong set a new world record in the process of 364kg across both lifts. Julio Mayora of Venezuela won his country’s first medal at Tokyo by placing second, and Indonesia’s Rahmat Erwin Abdullah took the bronze.

Medal count as of July 28th

1. China: 4 gold, 1 silver, 0 bronze

2. Chinese Taipei: 1 gold, 0 silver, 1 bronze

3. Canada: 1 gold, 0 silver, 0 bronze

3. Philippines: 1 gold, 0 silver, 0 bronze

5. Indonesia: 0 gold, 1 silver, 2 bronze

6. Italy: 0 gold, 1 silver, 1 bronze

7. Colombia: 0 gold, 1 silver, 0 bronze

7. India: 0 gold, 1 silver, 0 bronze

7. Turkmenistan: 0 gold, 1 silver, 0 bronze

7. Venezuela: 0 gold, 1 silver, 0 bronze

10. Kazakhstan: 0 gold, 0 silver, 2 bronze

11. Japan: 0 gold, 0 silver, 1 bronze

Media Watch

♦ Japanese bronze medalist Mikiko Ando severely injured her knee three weeks before the Games – now she’s a bronze medalist!

♦ Not to be outdone, new Olympic champion Hidilyn Diaz of the Philippines overcame being stranded abroad last year for months by building her own gym and weights out of bamboo and water jugs.

♦ For more news about the Tokyo 2020 weightlifting competition, visit the IWF’s new website.

Latest odds

Check the odds on men’s 96kg here / Check the odds on men’s 81kg here

Where to follow

International Weightlifting Federation: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube

Around the Rings: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn

Compiled by ATR staff

This article is brought to you by the International Weightlifting Federation