With Mexico’s Amalia Perez in a different weight class, the women’s up to 61kg could be anyone’s game at the Rio 2016 Paralympics.
Nigeria’s Lucy Ejike leads the Paralympic rankings following her performance from the IPC Powerlifting World Cup in Brazzaville, Congo, in 2015. But China’s Yan Yang is one who can push Ejike off the top.
After a bronze from Athens 2004, Yang took a break from the sport following the birth of her daughter. She returned to London 2012, where she took the silver medal, behind Perez. Already a world champion, the 30-year-old Chinese powerlifter is missing one medal from her name, and no doubt she is going for gold at Rio 2016.
There is a tight race for the podium positions between Ukraine’s Tetyana Shyrokolava and Poland’s Malgorzata Halas. Lifting 104kg and 103kg respectively for the Paralympic rankings, Shyrokolava and Halas would need more to catch up to Yang and Ejike. But they still can leave Rio with a medal.
You can catch the women’s up to 61kg on 11 September at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. All Para powerlifting events will be contested at the Riocentro – Pavilion 2.