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FIRST QUALIFIER ON MERIT !
In order to qualify one lifter for the London Olympics, the Kiribati Weight-lifting team had to finish in the first FIVE teams at the end of the Oceania Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Samoa earlier this month. (June 2012.) All six members of the Mens' team contributed to the successful outcome which showed Kiribati finishing SECOND to Australia. Thus their nominated lifter, David Katoatau, became the FIRST-EVER I-Kiribati to qualify for an Olympic place ! This is a piece of Kiribati sporting history !
David became Oceania Champion and was joined at the top of the podium by fellow scholarship-trainee Takenibeia Toromon, plus the experienced Meamea Thomas.
As he has been doing for the last two years, on Olympic scholarship, David will continue to train at the Oceania Centre of Excellence in Noumea, New Caledonia, under the guidance of coach Paul Coffa.
COMMONWEALTH MEDALLISTS TOO !
Incorporated in the Oceania Tournament were the Commonwealth Championships. Thus it was possible for David Katoatau to take the Commonwealth title, and Takenibeia and Meamea to become Commonwealth silver medallists. Overall this was the best performance by a Kiribati lifting team at this level.
The images are of David, and of him with the President of Kiribati Weight-lifting, Kokoria Iabeta, at a Welcome Party given for the Kiribati delegation in SW London on July 25th.
Also included in this competition were Youth and Junior Championships of Oceania and the Commonwealth.
Ruben Katoatau finished 4/4 in the Oceania Youth, 5/5 in the C/W Youth, 11/11 in the Oceania Junior, and 9/9 in the C/W Junior. He lifted Snatch 55 kg./Clean and Jerk 65 kg./ Total 120 kg.
Adam Fukuyama finished 2/4 in Oceania Youth, 3/5 in the C/W Youth, 2/5 in the Oceania Junior, and 4/7 in the C/W Junior. He lifted 80/107/187kg. He was 9/10 in the Senior Oceania and C/W Championships.
Takenibeia Toromon finished 1/10 in Oceania Junior, 1/7 in the C/W Junior, 1/9 in the Oceania Senior and 2/8 in the C/W Senior. He lifted 119/148/267 kg.
Otang Karitema finished 2/6 in Oceania Junior, 3/6 in the C/W Junior, 10/12 in the Oceania Senior, and 9/11 in the C/W Senior. He lifted 107/133/140 kg.
David Katoatau finished 1/8 in the Oceania Senior and 1/6 in the C/W Senior. He lifted 138/192/330 kg.
Meamea Thomas finished 1/6 in the Oceania Senior and 2/7 in the C/W Senior. He lifted 140/190/330 kg.
Bonteatu Thomas finished 4/8 in Oceania Senior and 5/7 in C/W Senior. He lifted 117/166/283 kg.
NOTE: These results were extracted from the International Weight-lifting Federation web-site.