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Commonwealth Games: Nigerian teen strikes 53kg weightlifting gold

African champion Chika Amalaha of Nigeria, at just 16 years of age, won gold in the women's 53kg weightlifting category at the Commonwealth Games on Friday (25 July).

GLASGOW: African champion Chika Amalaha of Nigeria, at just 16 years of age, won gold in the women's 53kg weightlifting category at the Commonwealth Games on Friday (25 July).

Amalaha snatched a best of 85kg before managing 111kg in the clean and jerk for a total of 196kg, to become the youngest Commonwealth weightlifter gold medallist.

Papua New Guinea's Dika Toua took silver at the Clyde Auditorium with 193kg (82+111), with India's Santoshi Matsa claiming bronze with 188kg (83+105).

"I'm absolutely delighted," said Amalaha. "I wasn't coming here to go for gold, I just wanted to break my own record. I'm so happy that I'm going home with gold in my first Commonwealth Games.

"I started at the age of 12, but my family were strongly against me doing the sport at first. They kept me telling to stop doing it, but I persuaded them by getting a female coach.

"From then on, it was hard work, training, a lot of pain and dedication that got me here today. And now my family were in the audience and they are so excited and so proud."

Cyprus' Dimitris Minasidis won the men's 62kg category in the evening session, snatching 125kg and clean and jerking 151kg for a total of 276kg.

Sri Lanka's Sudesh Peiris won silver with 273kg (123+150), while Vaipana Ioane of Samoa claimed bronze with 271kg (115+156).

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