Female lifters have easier path to Tokyo, says SWP head
The country’s national weightlifting federation is hoping to qualify more weightlifters to the Tokyo Olympics—including more women.
With 2016 Rio Games silver winner Hidilyn Diaz needing just a formality to claim a berth in the Summer Games, Samahang Weightlifting ng Pilipinas (SWP) unveiled female lifters Elreen Ando and Kristel Macrohon as among those being counted on to secure spots in the Games that will kick off in July.
“Our women have stronger chances because competition in men’s division is far too advanced,” said SWP president Monico Puentevella. “Although we still have a fighting chance in men’s division.”
The 22-year-old Ando from Cebu City and the 24-year-old Macrohon from Zamboanga City will try their luck in the last Olympic qualifier, the World Championships on April 16 to 25 in Tashkent, Uzbekistan.
Diaz, who is now training in Kuala Lumpur, is expected to make it outright in Tokyo on account of her world ranking. The reigning Asian champion is No. 2 in the world in her weight class.
Twenty-two-year-old John Fabuar Ceniza and 19-year-old John Dexter Tabique will join them in the delegation headed by coach Ramon Solis.
Puentevella said top eight finishers in each weight category will make it to the Tokyo Games. He said Ando, Macrohon and Ceniza are currently in the top eight in the world rankings.
Ando placed third in last year’s World Championships in Rome.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.