Egypt topped the overall medals table at the end of the Seventh Fazza IPC Powerlifting World Cup - Dubai 2016 over the weekend after sealing a dynamic double on the fifth and final day.
Victories for Nadia Ali (141kgs) and Mohamed Elsayed (227kgs) in the women’s 86kgs-plus category and the men’s U107kgs classification took the North African country’s gold tally to 10 as they claimed half of the 20 on offer at senior level.
The other 10 gold medals were shared among seven nations (Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kyrgyzstan, Poland, Russia and Ukraine) and they accrued more medals in total (16) than the runner-up Iran (six) and third-placed Ukraine (nine) put together (15).
The Ukrainians had seemed set to finish second at this meeting, but Siamand Rahman’s new world record lift of 296kgs in the very last event – the men’s 107kgs-plus class – took his country up to three golds to the Eastern Europeans’ two and thus the second position.
Rahman’s sensational showing was a fitting finale to the action at the Dubai Club for the Disabled prior to the closing ceremony, where representatives from each of the 42 participating nations were presented with special mementos of this seventh edition.
The Dubai-based artist Fawaz Ayoub painted a portrait of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and the Ruler of Dubai, using glue and gold glitter and there was a prize draw to give all attendees 12 chances to win attractive prizes.
The UAE’s Paralympic hero Mohammed Khamis Khalaf, who claimed the hosts’ only senior medal here with bronze in the men’s U88kgs event, was also recognised for his sterling contribution to Emirati powerlifting.
“This championship started seven years ago under the patronage – and with the full support – of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Crown Prince of Dubai, and every year we’ve seen fantastic achievements and great performances from amazing athletes, who have made this event a big and successful one. The world records that have been set in this edition is a very clear indication of that simple fact,” saidd Majid Abdullah Al Usaimi, the Executive Director at the Dubai Club for the Disabled and Director of the Fazza Championships for the Disabled.
Jon Amos, the Chairman of IPC (International Paralympic Committee) Powerlifting, said: “What a fantastic competition we witnessed here, with some very good performances over five days. We saw 23 records broken this week – eight senior world records, two junior world records and 13 regionals, so well done to the athletes. There was a lot at stake and, to those who are now going to Rio (de Janeiro for the Paralympic Games), I say good luck, and – to those who are not – keeping training for Tokyo (in 2020) and you still have World Championships in Mexico City next year.”
Arab countries made up four of the top 10 nations overall, with Jordan (fourth), Iraq (tied seventh with Kyrgyzstan) and Algeria (tied 10th with Colombia, Hungary and Vietnam) all finishing behind runaway winners Egypt.
This event was held under the patronage of Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, the Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Sports Council (DSC) and organized and supervised by the Dubai Club for the Disabled, with the support of their strategic partners the Hamdan Bin Mohammed Heritage Center (HHC) and in cooperation with the International Paralympic Committee (IPC), the General Authority for Youth and Sports Welfare (GAYSW), the DSC and the UAE Paralympic Committee.