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Fazrul triumphs at Australian Open

PETALING JAYA: It was Muhd Fazrul Azrie’s turn to be in the limelight at the Australian Open International Weightlifting Champion­ships.

The 22-year-old delivered the third gold for Malaysia in the men’s below 77kg with a 312kg total at the Victorian Weightlifting Stadium in Melbourne on Saturday.

In the field of 17 weightlifters, Fazrul’s only challenger for the gold came from local favourite Francois Etoundi.

But Fazrul held the initiative, confidently lifting 138kg in his final snatch attempt to command a 2kg lead over the Australian.

In the clean and jerk, Fazrul successfully executed all his three lifts of 166kg, 170kg and 174kg.

Etoundi, however, faltered in his last at­­tempt at 175kg and had to settle for the silver with a 306kg total.

Taretiita Tabaroua of Kiribati lifted a 303kg total to bag the bronze.

With Fazrul’s gold, Malaysia’s four-man team secured a 100% success. Earlier on Friday, Muhd Azroy Hazalwafie was successful in the below 56kg class while Hafifi Mansor emerged triumphant in the below 69kg category.

Malaysia also secured a silver through Muhd Zaidi Nordin in the 62kg class.