Nigeria’s Paul Kehinde Oluwafemiayo on Friday night broke the men’s -65kg world record at theWorld Para Powerlifting Championships in Mexico.
The competition ends on Saturday. Kehinde is the second Nigerian lifter to break a world record at the 2017 worlds after Folashade Oluwafemiayo broke the women’s -86kg world record on the second day of the competition.
Kehinde, who had set the world record of 220kg in the event at the Rio 2016 Paralympics, broke his own record in the third attempt after cleanly lifting 220.5kg. His first attempt was 210kg while his second attempt was 211.
He however couldn’t extend the world record as he failed to clear his fourth attempt of 224kg.
China’s Liu Lei won silver with a 193kg lift while Algeria won their first medal at the worlds as Bettir Hocine won bronze with a lift of 188kg.
Also, Rio 2016 Paralympic Games champion Roland Ezuruike and Josephine Orji added to Nigeria’s medal haul at the event.
Ezuruike won gold in the men’s +54kg while Orji added silver to the haul in the women’s +86kg.
The competition ends today.
Ezuruike, who was debuting at the worlds, lifted 180kg in his second attempt after opening with a 175kg lift. He failed to get a clean lift in his third attempt at 184kg.
Orji faced a stiff opposition from Egyptian Randa Mahmoud. The Egyptian lifted 138kg to win gold after getting a clean lift in her first two attempts at 132kg and 135kg respectively. Orji failed her first and second attempts at 135kg but got a clean lift in her third attempt at 136kg.
The latest performance brings Nigeria’s medal haul to nine – four gold, three silver and two bronze. Team Nigeria are second in the table behind China, who have 12 medals – five gold, fivesilver and two bronze. Iran, who have won eight medals – three gold, four silver and one bronze – are third whileEgypt, who have won five medals – three gold and two bronze – are fourth.
Oluwafemiayo won the first gold while Lucy Ejike won the second gold in the women’s +61kg and former world record holder Yakubu Adesokan and Ndidi Nwosu each won bronze in the men’s +49kg and women’s +73kg. Olaitan Ibrahim and Bose Omolayo won silver medals.
An excited Ezuruike told paralympic.org that the medal was a surprise because he got injured during the preparations for the competition.
“I am so happy! I had an injury while preparing for the World Championships and did not get here in my best possible form. So this gold medal was an absolute surprise,” he said.
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