PETALING JAYA: Malaysia will be represented in weightlifting at the Olympics for the first time since Beijing in 2008.
The national team have secured qualification for the Rio de Janeiro Games at the Asian Weightlifting Championships in Tashkent, Uzbekistan.
The men’s squad notched one of the seven places on offer for countries who had yet to qualify through the overall team ranking.
The Asian meet is the final qualifying event for the continent.
The team notched a total of 137 points through Muhd Azroy Wafie (below 56kg), Muhd Aznil Bidin (below 62kg), Hafifi Mansor (below 69kg), Mohd Fazrul Azrie, Loro Wellkinson (both below 77kg) and Elisha Louis Tan Kim Ho (below 105kg) to be placed third behind Japan (144pts) and Iran (142pts).
The remaining spots went to India (129pts), Kyrgyzstan (127pts), Saudi Arabia (121pts) and Sri Lanka (117pts).
Malaysian Weightlifting Federation (MWF) honorary secretary Pang Siew Huat confirmed that Malaysia can send one weightlifter of their choice to Rio in August.
“The whole team did very well in the face of fierce competition. They performed beyond expectations, while the coaches, physio and other team members did their jobs professionally.
“We will discuss with our coaches and the National Sports Council (NSC) on who to send to the Olympics,” said Siew Huat, who is with the team in Tashkent.
Former Commonwealth Games gold medallist Amirul Hamizan Ibrahim was the last Malaysian weightlifter to compete at the Olympics in 2008. He had qualified on merit after finishing fourth in the Asian Olympic qualifiers in Japan that same year.