Fabulous Fares Takes the Lead in Doha

Doha, Qatar: Fares Ibrahim, Qatar's Olympic champion, took center stage at the Qatar Cup IWF Grand Prix II in Aspire Ladies Hall, securing a remarkable double victory in front of his home crowd.

In the 102 kg competition, Fares engaged in a thrilling showdown with reigning world champion Liu Huanhua. The Qatari weightlifting sensation claimed gold in both the clean and jerk and the total weight categories, along with a bronze in the snatch. His lifts of 176 kg in snatch and 224 kg in clean and jerk added up to a total of 400 kg, marking his first achievement of this kind since the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, where he became Qatar's first Olympic champion.

The competition intensified between Fares and Huanhua, with the gold on the line after the weight was raised to 217 kg. Fares secured the gold by successfully lifting 224 kg in the clean and jerk, while Huanhua managed 222 kg. Despite Fares' victory, he attempted a 232 kg lift, aiming for a new world record, but fell short, concluding with a 224 kg lift and a total of 400 kg.

Reflecting on his performance, Fares expressed satisfaction but noted a desire for a world record. He attributed the slight shortfall to the joy of victory and reaching the 400 kg mark. Fares, already qualified for the Paris 2024 Games, emphasized his hard work and training for the comeback.

In the snatch category, Fares secured third place, with Garik Karapetyan of Armenia claiming the gold by lifting 180 kg. The women's 81 kg category saw Liang Xiaomei of China dominating, earning three gold medals and setting world records in clean and jerk and total.

The awards ceremony featured distinguished guests, including Mohammed Yousef Al Mana, Qatar Olympic Committee's First Vice President and President of Qatar, Arab, and Asian Weightlifting Federations, among others.