Bhubaneswar, March 20 (IANS) The Indian IWLF National Weightlifting Championship 2021-2022 got underway in Odisha’s capital city, Bhubaneswar, on Sunday. The event will continue till March 31.
Indian Weightlifting Federation (IWLF) in association with the Odisha Weightlifting Association with support from the Sports and Youth Services Department of the Odisha government is conducting the event.
The competition will be held in 10 different weight categories for youth (boys & girls), junior and seniors (men and women). Over 800 weightlifters from across 30 states are participating in the event.
The championships were declared open by Odisha Sports Secretary, R. Vineel Krishna in the presence of Sahadev Yadav, President, Indian Weightlifting Federation (IWLF), Deepa Malik, President, Paralympic Committee of India and other dignitaries.
Speaking on this occasion, the Sports Secretary said, “We are very glad to be hosting this National Weightlifting Championship in Odisha, across categories. Weightlifting is a very important sport for India and has brought laurels for the country in the international arena. I commend the IWLF for taking the sports to such great heights.”
Even for Odisha, weightlifting is amongst a priority sport. The state has invested in 89 indoor multipurpose halls across Odisha where weightlifting will be promoted, he said, adding, the indoor halls along with the Weightlifting High-Performance Centre will collectively boost the weightlifting ecosystem in the state.
“We look forward to working with IWLF in not only hosting tournaments but also setting up a National Centre of Excellence in Odisha,” added Krishna.
President, IWLF, Sahadev Yadav, said, “The facilities, the hospitality, the venue, everything here is of the best quality and we look forward to organising bigger tournaments and one international competition in the State of Odisha in 2023.”
For the first time in the history of this championship, it has been decided that first, second and third prizes will be given to the athletes in all categories. The first, second, and third place winners will be awarded Rs 10,000, Rs. 5000, and Rs. 3000, respectively.
This competition is the qualifier for the 5th edition of the Khelo India Youth Games, 2022 which is scheduled to be held later this year. This will also be considered a Selection Trial for the IWF Youth and Junior world championships both for eligible lifters.