Lifter Pesi clinches gold in National Games

[ M Doley ]

GANDHINAGAR, 30 Sep: Arunachal Pradesh opened their 36th National Games campaign with a gold medal in weightlifting here in Gujarat on Friday.

Charu Pesi struck the yellow metal in the men’s 61 kg category.

He lifted 114 kgs in snatch and 145 kgs in clean & jerk, for a total of 259 kgs.

The silver medal in this category went to Service’s Muna Nayak. He lifted 108 kgs in snatch and 147 kgs in clean & jerk. He lifted two kgs more weight than Pesi in clean & jerk.

Mizoram’s Zakhuma won the bronze with a total lift of 254 kgs (snatch 113 kgs + clean & jerk 141 kgs).

Pesi lifted 110 kgs in his first attempt, 113 kgs in the second attempt, and 114 kgs in the third attempt in snatch.

In clean & jerk, Pesi started with 136 kgs. He lifted 142 kgs in his second attempt, and 147 kgs in the third and final attempt.

Arunachal Olympic Association president Taba Tedir presented the medals to the winners of this category.

Earlier, Kh Roshibina Devi of Arunachal finished fourth in a tough weight category, where Tokyo Olympics silver medallist Saikhom Mirabai Chanu of Manipur competed.

Devi lifted 67 kgs in snatch and 92 kgs in clean and jerk.

Chanu clinched the gold medal with a total lift of 191 kgs. She lifted 84 kgs in snatch and 107 kgs in clean & jerk.

The silver medal was won by Kh Sanjita Chanu of Manipur. She lifted 82 kgs in snatch and 105 kgs in clean & jerk.

On Saturday, lifter Jimjang Deru will compete in the men’s 67 kg category.

Nani Sonam will compete in the women’s skateboarding semifinal at 10 am on Saturday.

The state’s team coach Yukar Sibi said he is expecting at least two gold medals from the lifters.

Tedir, who is also Arunachal’s education minister, and is here to motivate the state’s team, congratulated Pesi on clinching the gold medal.

He exuded confidence that Arunachal would win at least five gold medals in the Games.

Arunachal Olympic Association secretary-general Bamang Tago, the state’s chef-de-mission Abraham K Techi, and his deputy Tadang Minu also congratulated Pesi for making Arunachal proud by winning the gold medal.

Pesi’s is the second gold medal for Arunachal in the National Games.

Arunachal had won the first gold medal in team archery in the previous Games, which was held in Kerala in 2015.

Arunachal has fielded 17 athletes in the Games – the largest contingent so far.