TOKYO, July 23 (Reuters) – China’s Hou Zhihui, current world record holder in the lightest women’s category, may smash her own record on Saturday when the Tokyo 2020 weightlifting begins, and take the first gold for her country.

Hou, who holds the world record in snatch with 96 kg, is going up against India’s Mirabai Chanu, who holds the world record with 119 kg in clean and jerk. However, with 213 kg in total, Hou holds the world record in that category, too.

There are two Olympic lifts: the clean and jerk, and the snatch. Each athlete is allowed three attempts at each lift. The best lift in each is combined to determine the overall total. Athletes must successfully attempt the snatch before proceeding to the clean and jerk.

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Since the Olympic weightlifting competition restricts the number of entries to one athlete per nation in each weight category, China has entered Hou ahead of reigning world champion Jiang Huihua and Zhang Rong, both of whom have lifted more than Chanu’s 86 kg in snatch.

Chanu, India’s only representative in weightlifting, has a personal best of 203 kg, and has put forward an entry of 210 kg for Saturday’s competition. She’s one of India’s strongest bets for an Olympic medal this year.

In Rio, Chanu was one of two athletes in her category who didn’t register a total, after failing all three of her clean …….


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