Ficco and Fayzullaeva clinch weightlifting golds
At the Europa Pavilion, Italy’s Cristiano Ficco claimed victory in the men’s 85kg, while world junior champion Kumushkhon Fayzullaeva of Uzbekistan was a comfortable winner in the women’s 63kg.
Ficco, the nephew of Giuseppe Ficco, who lifted at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, produced a combined total of 325kg (145kg snatch, 180kg clean & jerk), which was enough to see off Tarmenkhan Babayev (AZE), with 316kg. Ali Alothman (KSA) completed the podium with 299kg.
Fayzullaeva (UZB) lifted 218kg (94kg snatch, 124kg clean & jerk) to win the title ahead of Thipwara Chontavin (THA) with 202kg, and Galya Shatova (BUL) with 201kg.
In the men’s competition one of the favourites Greece’s Gerasimos Galiatsatos paid the price for his over ambition, failing three times at 150kg in the men’s 85kg before bursting into tears.
Ficco felt sympathy for his Greek rival. “I think he was shaken by his performance,” he said.
“Probably it was a bit over the top, but I can understand. “My strategy varies according to my rivals. If they aim low, I am inclined to go 1kg above. If they aim high, I go first and then they finish. Anyway, I have fun.”