Medal prospects ready to go in Gold Coast

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BY ROMULUS HUTA

The Solomon Islands flag bearer during last night’s official opening of the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games Jenlyn Wini poses with distance runner Sharon Firisua

OUR female weightlifting duo to the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games in Australia Jenlyn Wini and Mary Lifu Kini will compete tomorrow.

Wini is the current Commonwealth champion in the women’s 58kg category. She will be faced by a total of 14 strong opponents.

Her opponents are Tia-Clair Toomey (Australia), Fayema Akther (Bangladesh), Tali Darsigny (Canada), Laura Hewitt (England), Maria Mareta (Fiji), Saraswati Rout (India), Winny Langat (Kenya), Marceeta Marlyne Marcus (Malaysia), Ketty Lent (Mauritus), Alethea Boon (New Zealand), Jody Hughes (Scotland), Johanni Taljaard (Republic of South Africa), Nadeeshani Rajapaksha (Sri Lanka) and Christie Williams of Wales.

Wini is one of the medal contenders in this category.

Looking through the archives, no athlete from the Solomon Islands has ever won a Commonwealth medal.

Martin Rara, President of the National Olympic Committee of Solomon Islands (NOCSI) said Wini is a medal prospect in Gold Coast.

“Being the current commonwealth champions in the women’s 58kg category, she stands a good chance of winning a medal at the Games.

“If she gets one, this could go down as a history for Solomon Islands. We have never won a medal in the Commonwealth Games.”

For Kini, who will be competing in the women’s 53kg division, will go up against 13 others including Pacific Games champion Dika Toua of Papua New Guinea (PNG).

Her other opponents are Tegan Napper (Australia), Fullapati Chakma (Bangadesh), Rachel Leblanc-Bazinet (Canada), Fraer Morrow (England), Ruth Baffoe (Ghana), Sanjita Chanu Khumukcham (India), Sharifah Inani Najwa Syd Anuar (Mauritas), Liebon Akua (Nauru), Philipa Patterson (New Zealand), Fatima Yakubu (Nigeria), Chamari Warnakulasuriya (Sri Lanka) and Catrin Jones (Wales).

Kini bagged a bronze in last year’s Commonwealth Weightlifting Championship and is also one of the medal contenders.

Wini and Kini have been training at the performance-enhancing Oceania Weightlifting Institute based in Noumea, New Caledonia.

Male weightlifter David Gorosi is the other member of the Solomon Islands three-member team to Gold Coast.

Gorosi competes in the 85kg category and his competition will be on Saturday.

The weightlifting competition of the Commonwealth Games stretches from April 5 to 9 at the Carrara Sports and Leisure Centre in Gold Coast.

The Games was officially opened last night.

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