Weightlifting: What Pakistan's doping offence means for Jeremy Lalrinnunga at CWG 2022
A total of 6 Pakistani weightlifters have returned positive tests and are set to face lengthy bans due to the nature of their offence.
A total of 6 Pakistani weightlifters have tested positive for banned substances in the latest round of testing conducted by the International Testing Agency (ITA). The mandatory doping test is taking place ahead of the 2022 Commonwealth Games to be held in Birmingham between Jul 28-Aug 8.
One of the banned athletes is ace weightlifter Talha Talib. Talha finished 5th in the 67kg category at the Tokyo Olympics last year and was the favourite to claim the gold medal at the CWG 2022. He is Indian weightlifter Jeremy Lalrinnunga's biggest competitor and his early exit might possibly clear the path for Jeremy to claim gold in the 67kg category.
To give some perspective, Talha Talib's best lift came at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics where he lifted 320kg to finish 5th. The breakdown of the lift was 150kg in snatch and 170kg in clean and jerk. Jeremy has a personal best of 306kg which he attained at the International Qatar Cup in 2019. He has come close to bettering his PB at the Commonwealth Championships in 2021 where he lifted 305 kg. Between the two, Talha definitely had an upper hand heading into the CWG 2022.
Talha tested positive for norandrosterone twice within the span of 12 days in 2021. One of those positive tests came during the IWF World Championships where he finished third to claim bronze.
A statement published by the ITA stated "All six athletes have been informed of the cases and have been provisionally suspended until the resolution of the matters. During the period of the provisional suspension, the athletes cannot inter alia participate in any capacity in any competition or any other activity either at the international or national level organised by any signatory of the World Anti-Doping Code."