By Ricky Manliguis
MANILA-- Hidilyn Diaz stayed true to form by winning the gold medal in the women's 55kg category in weightlifting in the 2019 Southeast Asian Games at the Ninoy Aquino Stadium.
The Olympic silver medallist Diaz started with a 91kg lift in the snatch, before adding 120kgs in the clean and jerk for a total of 211 kilograms to finally nab the country's first-ever SEAG gold in the sport of weightlifting.
Nguyen Thi Thuy of Vietnam finished with a total lift of 197kg (82kgs in snatch, 115 in the clean and jerk) for the silver medal, while 17-year old Indonesian Juliana Klarisa got the bronze after a lift of 80kgs in snatch and 95kg in clean and jerk for a 175-kg total.
The gold medal added to the silver and bronze medals the hosts won on opening day. John Fabliar Ceniza won the silver in 55kg men's event, while Mary Flor Diaz got the bronze in the women's 45kg.
But more then anything, it was also Diaz's first gold medal in the biennial meet, eclipsing her back-to-back silver finishes in 2011 and 2013. She is now setting her sights at a return trip to the Olympics in Tokyo next year.
Weighlifting action resumes tomorrow with three more events to be played, the men's 67kg, and the women's 59kg and 64kg categories.