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Weightlifter Yoichi Itokazu nabs silver at world championships

Kyodo

Yoichi Itokazu won silver in the men’s 62-kg division at the Weightlifting World Championships on Wednesday.

Itokazu, who finished fourth in the same weight division at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, snatched 134 kg and lifted 165 kg in the clean and jerk at the Anaheim Convention Center.

His 299 kg total left him 1 kg behind winner Francisco Antonio Mosquera Valencia from Columbia.

Georgia’s Shota Mishvelidze (298 kg) took third.

Itokazu became Japan’s first male medalist since 1981 at the world championships, according to the Japan Weightlifting Association.

“I’m really happy that I won the first medal in 36 years, and be the first Japanese in a while to stand on the podium,” said Itokazu.

“I couldn’t pull myself together until the end though, I was in contention for the gold, so there are still things that I have to work on.”