By Willie Lovai, Port Moresby 2015 Games News Service
PORT MORESBY, July 8 – David Katoatau (KIR) overpowered his opponents to claimed Kiribati’s first gold medals at the Port Moresby 2015 Pacific Games in the men’s -105kg category in weightlifting at the PNG Power Dome on Wednesday.
Katoatau won the overall title with a total lift of 341kg, outscoring the silver and bronze medallists by 24kg.
The man they call ‘Mr Wonderful’ also took the gold in snatch with a lift of 141kg and clean and jerk with a massive lift of 200kg.
“I feel so happy because for a long time I didn’t lift this weight” said Katoatau, who won Kiribati’s only ever medal, a gold, at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.
“I have a bit of an injury but I fought for it. I still have a bit of pain, I pushed myself. To see this big weight again, 200kg, I am just so happy that I got it.”
Anthony Taylor (NZL) and Zac Grgurevic (AUS) both lifted 317kg but Taylor took the silver because he had a lower body weight.
Although Taylor came second, he said it was special competing against Katoatau.
“It is pretty inspirational really, to be sharing the platform and the middle dias with him,” Taylor said.
Following Katoatau’s first gold medal in snatch, he dominated the clean and jerk with a 200kg lift leaving Taylor (NZL) in a distant second place with his 178kg lift and Grgurevic in bronze with 176kg.
The Australian took the silver in snatch and the New Zealander the bronze.
After his last lift, attempting 205kg in the clean and jerk, Katoatau was so pleased with his performance that he did a little dance for the crowd.
“It made me happy. I like to dance,” he said.
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