Yazmin Zam­mit Stevens, Kyle Mi­callef rep­re­sent Malta at Com­mon­wealth Cham­pi­onships

Malta Independent - - SPORT CLASSIFIEDS -

Malta Weightlift­ing’s quest for qual­i­fi­ca­tion for the Com­mon­wealth Games in 2018 got off to a great start at the first qual­i­fy­ing event this past week­end.

Yazmin Zam­mit Stevens and Kyle Mi­callef were the two ath­letes rep­re­sent­ing Malta at the Com­mon­wealth Cham­pi­onships held in Pe­nang, Malaysia. They were com­pet­ing against ath­lete from 22 other coun­tries, all fight­ing for a qual­i­fy­ing po­si­tion at the 2018 Games, which are to be held in Aus­tralia.

First to take the plat­form was Zam­mit Stevens, who had an excellent per­for­mance, de­spite it be­ing her first ma­jor in­ter­na­tional com­pe­ti­tion. She com­pleted all her snatch at­tempts to end with a max­i­mum of 75kg. Fol­low­ing a stel­lar per­for­mance in the snatch por­tion of the com­pe­ti­tion, she kept the mo­men­tum go­ing into the clean and jerk, mak­ing 2 out of her 3 at­tempts with her max­i­mum be­ing 91kg to give her a to­tal of 166kg. This was an im­por­tant mile­stone to reach for Zam­mit Stevens as, not only did it put her in 6th po­si­tion out of a group of 11 ath­letes, but also earned her MQS for next year’s Mediter­ranean Games to be held in June/July in Tar­rag­ona, Spain.

To add to this great achieve­ment, by the end of her com­pe­ti­tion, she had also bro­ken 7 na­tional records in the 63kg cat­e­gory.

Yazmin will now be pre­par­ing for the Euro­pean Un­der 23 cham­pi­onships in Is­rael in the first week of De­cem­ber.

Kyle Mi­callef was next to per­form. Hav­ing built con­fi­dence af­ter his per­for­mance at the Rio Games in two pre­vi­ous com­pe­ti­tions, he started well mak­ing 2 out of 3 of his snatch at­tempts and in the process, set a new na­tional record in the 85kg cat­e­gory at 122kg.

Fol­low­ing a good start to his com­pe­ti­tion, he left it un­til his last at­tempt in the clean and jerk to se­cure a to­tal, mak­ing the lift at 149kg and fin­ish­ing with a 271kg to­tal which put him in 6th place over­all out of 17 ath­letes.

The per­for­mance was good enough to se­cure one of the qual­i­fy­ing places to the Com­mon­wealth Games and set 3 new na­tional records in the process, one of which stood for over 10 years. Over the next few months, he will be look­ing to main­tain his po­si­tion in the rank­ings and also aim to gain qual­i­fi­ca­tion to the Mediter­ranean Games next year.

The team was ac­com­pa­nied by Malta Weightlift­ing na­tional coach Jes­mond Caru­ana who helped the ath­letes with their prepa­ra­tion lead­ing up to the com­pe­ti­tion.

Caru­ana was also ap­pointed as tech­ni­cal of­fi­cial for both the Com­mon­wealth Cham­pi­onships and the World Youth Cham­pi­onships, which were or­gan­ised in con­junc­tion.

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