08 Apr Gold for Gareth Evans
After a solid start on day 1, day 2 was packed full of potential for Weightlifting Wales. First up saw junior sensation Catrin Jones in the Women’s 53kg category, with a field of experience including Dika Toua of Papua New Guinea, the competition was set for some close battles, and the class did not disappoint. Catrin secured her first and second attempts snatching 70kg & 72kg, only just missing 75kg for her third attempt. Moving into the clean & jerk Catrin opened with a solid 90kg moving onto to 93kg successfully to set new personal bests and Welsh records. In a close contest and as one of the youngest in the field Catrin finished a respectable 11th place.
Next up was the most experienced team member in Gareth Evans in the men’s 69kg, in a tough field of athletes Gareth opened comfortably with 130kg to stamp his authority on the field, and with every lift counting Gareth went on to secure 133kg & 136kg, equalling that of Deepak Lather of India and only Dissanayake Mudiyanselage Indika C. of Sri Lanka going 1kg ahead snatching 137kg, the competition was just getting started. Going into the clean & jerk the battle was on between Gareth and Dissanayake both opening with 160kg, Lather of India finished with a 295kg total to secure third, Gareth successfully went 163kg as did Dissanayake who missed 163kg on his second attempt putting Gareth in the driving seat, with Gareth posting 165kg for his third attempt, the pressure was back on Dissanayake who remained at 163kg and failed the lift making the way for Gareth to claim Wales’s first gold of the Games and setting both Welsh & British records in the process of becoming Commonwealth Games Champion. It was a superb performance from Gareth who is based at Hoyhead & Anglesey Weightlifting and Fitness Centre and coached by the former Commonwealth Weightlifting Champion, Ray Williams.
‘I’ve been working hard for months and months and months now and its been a long road ever since Glasgow, so it’s been a focus to come here and pick up a medal, so to do so it is fantastic’
Gareth Evans, Commonwealth Games Champion – 69kg
In the last event of the day, Christie Marie Williams was in the women’s 58kg category making her international return after injury, it was a nervous start for Christie Marie missing her opening attempt at 75kg, although experience allowed her to successfully hit 75kg on her second attempt but unfortunately missed 80kg on her third. In the clean & jerk Christie Marie started solidly with 95kg, before moving onto 99kg, however was unable to secure her second and third attempts and finishing with a 170kg total, finishing in 7th Place.