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Iran's Moradi breaks weightlifting world record at Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games

23 Sep 2017
Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, September 23, 2017: Iran’s Olympic Games champion Sohrab Moradi broke the world record in the men’s 94kg weightlifting competition at the Olympic Council of Asia’s 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, on Saturday evening. Moradi, the reigning Olympic champion at 94kg, lifted a total of 413kg – beating the previous mark of 412 set by Akakios Kakhiasvilis of Greece in Athens on November 27, 1999.

The 29-year-old Iranian lifted 185kg in the snatch and 228kg in the clean and jerk to break the world record by just 1kg. “I have worked very hard and devoted my life to weightlifting, training non-stop three times a day. I allocate my time only to weightlifting, nothing else. This is the secret of my success,” he said. “The world record is the result of these efforts.  One of my goals in life was to win the Olympic Games gold medal because this is very important for every athlete. 

“Another goal was to break the world record and I have done that in Ashgabat at the Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games. I am delighted to set a new world record – it was one of my wishes this year.” Iran is one of 65 teams competing at Ashgabat – 45 from Asia, 19 from Oceania plus a refugee team from Africa. There are 21 sports and 6,000 athletes and officials from the 65 teams, and 13 of the 15 competition venues are in the new Ashgabat Olympic Complex.

“I was very surprised when I came here because this is such a big games,” he added. “The organisation by the Turkmenistan government and the officials has been fantastic.” After lifting 185kg in the snatch, Moradi waited until all his rivals had completed their clean and jerk before entering at 220kg. He failed in his first attempt, putting himself under pressure for his second effort, which he completed successfully to seal the gold medal.

His next thought was the world record, so his camp added 8kg – good enough to set a new mark if successful. With a packed arena cheering him on, Moradi drew on all his experience and strength to complete the lift and give the 5th Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games a coveted WR (world record) alongside the name of the gold medallist in the men’s 94kg weightlifting.
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