Commonwealth Games gold medallist Saikhom Mirabai Chanu, in her first international tournament after getting injured, won gold at EGAT Cup in Thailand on Thursday. The tournament is one of the qualifying events for 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Chanu made a strong comeback from the lower back injury that kept her out of action since the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast in April. The weigtlifter won the 49kg category gold by lifting a total of 192 kg – 82kg in snatch and 110kg in clean and jerk.
The 24-year-old from Manipur finished top of the podium at the silver level Olympic qualifying event, the points from which will come in handy when the final rankings for Tokyo 2020 cut are done.
According to the International Weightlifting Federation, Olympics qualification for weightlifting is based on ranking points earned from competitions held between three periods – November 1, 2018 to April 30, 2019; May 1, 2019 to October 31, 2019; November 1, 2019 to April 30 2020.
Speaking to PTI from Thailand after winning the gold, Chanu said, “This is my first international event after recovering from injury. I am feeling 100 per cent fit but since this is first one after injury, it is not the best result. But this is just four kg less than my personal best of 196kg. I am quite satisfied and happy with my performance. I had won World Championships in 2017 with 194kg.”
“My next target is the Asian Championships in China, followed by the world championships, which is very crucial for me,” Chanu said.
— OGQ (@OGQ_India) 7 February 2019
And ?@mirabai_chanu? is back!!
Wins Gold at EGAT Cup in Thailand, qualifying event for Tokyo lifting total of 192 kgs.
This is her 1st international competition after CWG 2018 & serious back injury
— Viren Rasquinha (@virenrasquinha) 7 February 2019
Chanu required extensive physiotherapy after getting injured mid-way last year. Because of her injury, Chanu had to miss the world championships (also a gold level Olympic qualifier) as well as the Asian Games in Jakarta.
Chanu shot to fame after winning gold for India at the Commonwealth Games in 2018 with an effort of 196kg – 86kg in snatch and 110kg in clean and jerk, a Games record and also her personal best.