Elreen Ando wins gold in SWP National Championships; earns slot in 2023 Asian Games
CEBU CITY, Philippines—- Cebuana Olympian Elreen Ando easily bagged the gold medal in the women’s 64 kilogram division in the Samahang Weightlifting ng Pilipinas (SWP) National Championships in Bacolod City on Friday, July 14, 2023.
Ando, who was initially pitted against the Philippines’ first Olympic gold medalist Hidilyn Diaz in the ongoing national championships, lifted a total of 212kgs to rule the 64kgs open division.
She went on to bag her second gold medal after topping the collegiate division, representing the University of Cebu (UC) Webmasters.
Ando lifted 95kgs in snatch and went on to lift 115kgs in the clean & jerk which totaled to 212kgs.
It was three kilograms shy of duplicating her Philippine record, which she set during the 32nd Southeast Asian Games (SEAG) in Cambodia held early this year.
Ando etched a historic gold medal win in the 32nd SEAG by setting three new Philippine records in her gold medal lift in the 59kgs division, which totaled 216kgs.
It can be recalled that Ando and Diaz almost faced each other in the 64kgs open division after the latter’s original weight division was removed from the Olympics, forcing her to move up a weight.
However, both weightlifters decided to compete in different weight categories to bolster the Philippines’ chances of winning a medal in the Asian Games in Guangzhou, China, later this year as the gold medalists in this national championships will represent the country in this quadrennial meet.
Finishing second to Ando in last Friday’s competition was Jane Linete Hipolito, who lifted 176kgs. She had 80kgs in snatch and 96kgs in the clean & jerk.
The bronze medal went to Amy Catherine Conde, who had a total lift of 136kgs. Conde lifted 58kgs in snatch and 78kgs in the clean & jerk.
On the other hand, Rhianne Cabalida, who is also from Cebu City, joined Ando in winning a gold medal after she topped the 64kgs youth division, while Jeamae Palagtiw earned a silver medal in the 55kgs youth division. Both Cabalida and Palagtiw represent the Aliño Weightlifting Club.
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