Vanessa Sarno continues impressive streak to become Asian weightlifting champ

The Philippine Anthem played at the medal ceremony as Vanessa Sarno wins gold in the 71kg division of the Asian Weightlifting Championship. IWF Screengrab

MANILA, Philippines—Vanessa Sarno showed everybody in the IWF Asian Championships proof of her ability to become the next weightlifting celebrity from the Philippines.

The 17-year-old reigning Asian junior champion hoisted 128 kilograms in the clean and jerk to seal her triumph in the women’s 71kg final of the continental meet Wednesday night in Turkmenistan.

Sarno’s final lift put her safely ahead with a total of 229 kilograms that resulted in a pair of gold medals after carrying 101 kilograms earlier in the snatch, which was good for a silver performance.

“She’s the reigning Asian junior champion. It was really impressive since she ruled the seniors division of her weight category this time,’’ said Samahang Weightlifting ng Pilipinas president Monico Puentevella.

Gulnabat Kadyrova of Turkmenistan claimed silver medals in the snatch (102kgs) and total (223kgs) after settling for the bronze in the clean and jerk (121kgs).

Yekaterina Bykova of Kazakhstan placed third in the snatch (91kgs) and total (213kgs) following her silver in the clean and jerk (122kgs).

Counting Sarno’s triumph, Team Philippines has collected two gold medals, six silvers and three bronzes in the continental meet.

Southeast Asian Games gold medalist Kristel Macrohon and John Dexter Tabique are likewise expected to contribute to the country’s medal cache over the next two days.

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