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Jeremy Lalrinnunga to clash with Achinta Sheuli for Paris Olympics spot

Star weightlifter Jeremy Lalrinnunga will have to bulk up to 73 kgs as his 67-kg category has been scrapped from the 2024 Olympics. But India already has national record holder Achinta Sheuli competing in that division.

Jeremy Lalrinnunga to clash with Achinta Sheuli for Paris Olympics spot

Jeremy Lalrinnunga and Achinta Sheuli with their gold medals at the 2022 Commonwealth Games



Updated: 24 Aug 2022 10:46 AM GMT

Commonwealth Games gold medallist lifters Jeremy Lalrinnunga and Achinta Sheuli will clash for the lone 73kg spot in the Paris Olympics as the former's 67kg doesn't feature in the 2024 Games.

With the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) scrapping 67kg from the Paris Games, Jeremy, who won the gold in the category at the CWG, will bulk up to compete in the 73kg weight class.

However, India already has representation in the weight division in Sheuli, who is the national record holder and reigning CWG champion in the 73kg division.

The two will now go head to head in a bid to seal qualification for the 2024 Olympics as only one lifter per country is allowed in a weight class.

"I will increase my weight to 73kg," Jeremy, who is in the US for a three-and-half week strength and conditioning training camp in St. Louis, told PTI.

"My natural weight is 65kg. So, going up will be difficult to increase my body weight," he added.

This will not be the first time Jeremy will have to bulk up. The 19-year-old lifter had won the 2018 Youth Olympics gold medal in Buenos Aires in the 62kg category. He had then moved to 67kg to comply with the new Olympic weight categories the IWF had introduced then.

Jeremy Lalrinnunga and Achinta Sheuli have both come up the ranks together, both winning gold at the 2022 Commonwealth Games. Only one of them, however, can go to the 2024 Olympics.

However, the Mizoram lifter conceded that he has struggled to gain weight in the last two years.

"My body weight has not been increasing. I am trying to increase it since 2019 to get till 70kg. My diet plan and supplements will change. Training will also be a bit different. The percentage will change."

"Asian Games and World Championship have 67kg but the aim is Paris Olympics," he added.

Weighing in on the situation, head coach Vijay Sharma said the two lifters will motivate each other to do better.

"It is good that Jeremy and Achinta will be in the same weight category. There should be healthy competition between lifters as otherwise they might take things easy," Sharma said.

"They both have to work really hard and improve to qualify. Now qualification will be tough as there are only five categories and everyone will be trying to get into these five classes," he added.

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