45-year-old forest department personnel A Manimaran bagged silver medal in the recently concluded Asian Powerlifting Championship 2018 at Udaipur, Rajasthan. The Asian Powerlifting Federation and Powerlifting India had organised Asian Powerlifting Championship 2018 at Udaipur, which started on May 1 and concluded on May 6 2018.
Story of A Manimaran
Though sportspersons from across 14 countries from Asia participated in the championship, all the three medals in the Master 1 lifter event in 74 kg category have been won by Indian powerlifters.
A silver medalist in this category, A Manimaran is a native of Ponmalai in Trichy who has got his first international medal.
Powerlifting consists of three attempts at maximal weight on three lifts- squat, bench press, and deadlift. Manimaran got gold in squat lift. He got silver in bench press and deadlift thereby securing an overall silver medal in the tournament.
A Manimaran was employed at the forest department as a driver through sports quota in 2009. He has several state and national-level medals to his credit. He won gold medal continuously from the year 2000-2007 in the all India forest meet. Manimaran developed interest in weightlifting during summer holidays after his plus 2 exams and decided to take it up as a sport. He has been consistently winning medals in the all India university tournaments in the powerlifting category.
Manimaran said that athletes from Indonesia and Philippines gave him tough competition during the tournament but he managed to keep his performance high along with other Indian players and it became a competition among Indian athletes.
A Manimaran wants to see Powerlifting at the Olympics
If powerlifting was part of Olympics, he would stand qualified for the event. Aspiring to win an Olympic gold, Manimaran said while Kabaddi will be part of Olympics from 2024, he really hopes that powerlifting gets recognition from the Olympic committee too.
N Ganesan, regional manager, Tamil Nadu Forest Plantation Corporation, Pudukkottai, to whom A Manimaran is a driver, said that participating in an Asian championship itself is an achievement but he has won medal which is unimaginable. He added that the credit should solely go to A Manimaran as it was his individual efforts that has brought fruits now and made the department proud.
Powerlifting is a sport that is played in both men and women category. For men, the criteria to compete are 59 kg, 66 kg, 74 kg, 83 kg, 93 kg, 105 kg, 120 kg and 120 kg+. For women, the criteria to compete are 47 kg, 52 kg, 57 kg, 63 kg, 72 kg, 84 kg and 84 kg+.
The sport is not a part of Olympic. Though it is played in Paralympic, with the sport first time competed in the competition in 1984. It has since been part of the Paralympic.