The Malta Weightlifting Association has organized a successful Malta Open Tournament on Sunday, June 1st which included the national team of Scotland apart from the local athletes.
The first of the four competitions saw a number of cadets from the Under-13s performing, with the boy’s category winner being Rylee Borg followed by Shardon Cassar. The girl’s section saw Alexia Guiga gain first place followed by Amy Victoria Zammit.
Being of such a young age, their performance is not assessed solely on the weight lifted, but also on the quality of technique and consistency in repetitively successful attempts.
In the Youth’s category, the Under-15s and Under-17s saw a strong performance by a good number of athletes: Kieran Mifsud took the helm as overall winner with 248 points followed by Owen Bugeja with 200.59 and Malcolm Camilleri trailing behind by the narrowest of margins, with 200.46 points. Fourth came Kirstin Coleiro with 167. It is worth mentioning that this category in particular included many new comers and showed good levels of improvement among the more experienced athletes, making this a great step for the future of Maltese Weightlifting. 14 year old Kieran Mifsud’s performance is worth a mention as this young athlete not only won the Junior’s category, but also totaled 214 kilos, breaking seven national records in the under-94kg category Under-17 and a further three in the Junior’s category under-20. This sets Kieran up the be the new star of Maltese Weightlifting. The Juniors category also saw students from MCAST Paola, coached by Matthew Muscat Inglott, participate for the first time. Following the Juniors, the Female category took to the podium, with Nicole Gatt being the most successful of the Maltese athletes – although not one of her better competitions, she still secured the overall win with 179 points. New participants such as Hayley Mizzi also left their mark, displaying good and improved technique, with Sarah Grixti also showing that she is a promising athlete, attempting to break national records but stopping just short. This was the first category to include lifters from the Scotland team, with Gorgie Black gaining an impressive 229 points followed by Sophie Smyth’s 202 points.
In the final Men’s Senior Category, the best local athlete was Noel Coleiro, who gained 278 points with a total of 240 kilos followed by Ryan Agius with 265 points and Martin Pisani with 254. These two athletes are very promising showing substantial progress from competition to another, also good to mention that Kieran Mifsud managed to seal fourth position even in this category. Rodmar Pulis the highest ranked athlete and close to the MQS for the commonwealth failed his last chance to qualify by missing the total.
The Scottish athlete Peter Kirkbride was at his best where he gave a spectacle for all of those present with the total of 327 kg. The Scottish national team composed of six athletes and three officials will remain in Malta in the coming days for a training camp. The team is in last preparation for the Commonwealth games to be held in their native Glasgow.