Poland’s Justyna Kozdryk served up a sensational opening to the IPC Powerlifting World Cup in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on Monday (15 February), winning the women’s up to 45kg ahead of Ukraine’s world champion Rayisa Toporkova.
It was the second time in just a few months that Kozdryk bettered the Ukrainian, having left the 2015 IPC Powerlifting European Open Championships with gold in November.
Kozdryk lifted 96kg to claim victory in Dubai, adding 3kg onto her winning lift from the Euros with just seven months until the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.
Toporkova (91kg) was second with three good lifts, just leading Russia’s Maria Beketova into third with 90kg.
In the women’s up to 41kg, Egypt’s Nawal Ramadan lifted a career best of 95kg to claim gold and improve her place in the Paralympic rankings for Rio 2016.
Ukraine’s Maryna Kopiika (88kg) built well towards her second place with three good lifts. Russia’s Yulia Vorontsova took two attempts on 81kg to reach the podium in third. Vorontsova lifted the same as Syria’s Noura Baddour but finished ahead because of her lighter bodyweight.
Jordan’s Beijing 2008 Paralympic silver medallist Omar Sami Hamadeh Qarada equalled his career best of 176kg in the men’s up to 49kg.
Hungary’s European silver medallist Nandor Tunkel was also in great form, taking second place on the podium with a 155kg push. That added 4kg onto his former personal best from the IPC Powerlifting World Cup in Rio de Janeiro in January.
Egypt’s Taha Abdelmagid (150kg) only needed one good lift to take third.
Kyrgyzstan’s European Open bronze medallist Esen Kaliev (150kg) was the victor in the men’s up to 54kg, easing to first ahead of Ukraine’s Sergii Khvalinskyi (142kg) in second.
Japan’s Tetsuo Nishizaki (128kg) was third, picking up his second international podium.
Full results are available at the IPC Powerlifting's website.
Competition continues in Dubai with the men’s up to 59kg and up to 65kg, and women’s up to 50kg and up to 55kg on Tuesday (16 February).
All the action, including live results, is being shown at the IPC Powerlifting's website.
The 2015 IPC Powerlifting World Cup in Dubai is the penultimate opportunity for athletes to improve their place in the Paralympic rankings for Rio 2016. The final chance will be at another World Cup in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, between 24-28 February.