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Watch: Anton Micallef sets national record as MWA hosts first ranking event

The Malta Weightlifting Association has organised its first ranking competition for 2022 and saw numerous records and personal records set.

The competition, which was set over two days, was divided so that the cadet, youth and junior athletes competed on Saturday, and the senior athletes were in action on Sunday.

It’s no secret that the MWA has nurtured youth talent over the past years, and this was evident in Saturday’s competition as the number of youth participants have now outnumbered the seniors by almost double.

Anton Micallef on his way to setting a new national record.

The cadet category was dominated by 11-year-old athletes Julia Grima and Nathan Mifsud.

Grima finished the competition with 48kg in the snatch and a massive 60kg in the clean and jerk in the 55kg category.

The National School of Sport athlete, Nathan Mifsud, finished with 36kg in the snatch and 50kg in the clean and jerk with a bodyweight of 38kg.

The show in the youth category competition, which is where the highest level of both athletes and talent is, was stolen by Tenishia Thornton.

At 16 years, the now considered veteran athlete in the sport, set new records on the clean and jerk and total in the 59kg category.

After finishing the snatch portion with an equal best at 77kg, she went on to clean and jerk 93kg, 96kg and 98kg

successfully. Both her second and third clean and jerks were good enough for national records, and also meant that her 173 and 175kg totals were good enough for new records too.

Thornton will have a very busy year ahead of her, with participation in the European, World Youth and Junior World championships on the cards.

Other notable performances came from Kim Camilleri Lagana, who has also surpassed her best ever result when she snatched 45kg in the snatch and finished with 59kg in the clean and jerk in the 45kg category.  Aaliyah Gatt also managed a great result in the same category where she snatched 40kg and clean and jerked 55kg.

Kaya Curmi Inguanez produced a 38kg snatch and 54kg clean and jerk.

Rylee Borg, the athlete who has been in the weightlifting scene since he was five years old, managed to obtain a great result after his success at the British Open last month.

Borg managed to finish this competition with 92kg in the snatch and 107kg in the clean and jerk.

Another good result came from Luke Treebyward with 80kg snatch and 100kg clean and jerk.

Senior event

On Sunday, the top senior result came from Anton Micallef who competed in the 89kg category.

Micallef managed to snatch a new national record of 120kg, three kilogrammes better on his own snatch best and one kilogramme over the previous national record in this weight class.

Micallef went on to clean and jerk 142kg on his first attempt, but unfortunately failed his second and third attempts.

His 262 kilogrammes total is a whopping seven kilogrammes better than his previous best.

Matthew Abela also managed personal bests across the board finishing with 90kg in the snatch and 110kg in the clean and jerk in the 81kg category.

Other senior honourable mentions are Shaun Ciantar who finished with 214kg total and Rodmar Pulis, the NSS coach, who ended up with 224kg total.

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