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Bajan lads shine at Criollo Cup


BEA DOTTIN, [email protected]

Bajan lads shine at Criollo Cup

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The Barbados weightlifting team are proving to be worth their weight in gold.
Actually, they’re worth their weight in silver and bronze too.
Two weeks after lifting the monkey off their backs in Malaysia, the boys in ultra-marine and gold returned from the Criollo Cup in Puerto Rico, with even more hardware, earning the team silver medals, along with six individual medals.
Barbados finished second behind the hosts Puerto Rico, and ahead of Colombia in the team standings.
The country’s most celebrated lifter, Ivorn McKnee was the biggest winner again, taking gold on Saturday after a 160 kilogram snatch and a 185 kilogram in the clean and jerk for a total lift of 345 kilos, which catapulted him to the top of the heap in the tournament’s 105 kilogram class.
The performance wasn’t as good as in Malaysia a fortnight ago, but team coach Andrew Callender isn’t about to get too picky. “Although this was five kilograms off his Malaysia performance, Ivorn continues well along his path to the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Scotland in seven months. His training and focus going forward is becoming more and more refined,” Callender told the NATIONSPORT before the team left Puerto Rico for its return trip.
The other outstanding member of the team was Brien Best, who made a seven kilogram improvement in his lifting statistics from Malaysia, snatching 103 kilos and 132 in the clean and jerk (he missed 137 kg in his final lift) for a total of 235kg in the 69 kilogram weight class.
“With that performance, he earned two silver medals and a bronze, the latter coming in he open class where he was the second youngest lifter in the 69 kilo category. Best was adjudged the best junior lifter at the event.
In the 77 kg weight class, Chad Blackman snatched 75 kilos and got a 95 kilo clean & jerk for a total of 170kg and a bronze medal.
In the 85 kilo class, Christian Payne snatched 75 kilogram and got a 90 kilogram clean & jerk for a total of 165 kilos, to also earn bronze. Both  Barbadians had to lose weight going into the competition.
 “Overall, I am happy with the performance of the team both here and in Malaysia,” the coach noted. “With our goals set firmly for further success at the 2014 games [Commonwealth and Central American And Caribbean], this team  has already sat down and we have mapped out a training regime for the next seven months and beyond,” Callender said. (BA)

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