Host City: Barcelona, Spain
Venue(s): Industrial Spain Pavillion, Barcelona
Date Started: August 3, 1992
Date Finished: August 3, 1992
Format: Total of best lifts in snatch and clean & jerk determined placement. Ties broken by lightest bodyweight.
The favorite was considered to be Altymurat Orazdurdiyev of the Unified Team, but he was a Turkmenistani athlete, and head coach [Vasily Alekseyev], a Russian, favored the Russian lifters, so he replaced Orazdurdiyev with [Ibragim Samadov], a Chechnyan Russian, who had won the 1991 World Championships. Samadov had also recently won the 1992 Europeans, in a close contest with [Pyrros Dimas] of Greece and Poland’s [Krzysztof Siemion]. Dimas was a native Albanian who competed for that nation at the 1990 European Championships but had emigrated to Greece in 1991 with his brother, and was granted Greek citizenship almost immediately.
The event turned out to be one of the closest in Olympic history. Samadov, Dimas, and Siemion all tied with 370.0 kg, with Siemion moving up with the best clean & jerk of 205.0 kg. Dimas and Siemion both weighed 81.80 kg, while Samadov weighed 81.85 kg, which dropped him back to the bronze medal. In a new weightlifting rule, first used at the 1992 Olympics, the tie between Dimas and Siemion was broken by whichever lifter posted the final total first. This was Dimas, who lifted 202.5 kg in the clean & jerk, before Siemion hoisted his 205.0 kg. Dimas would become one of the greatest lifters ever in the next few years, winning this class again at the 1996 and 2000 Olympics, and winning a bronze medal in 2004.
So the podium seemed set, with Dimas first, Siemion second, and Samadov third, but Samadov was not happy. He was known to be high-strung and a perfectionist and at the medal ceremony, he refused to lean forward to receive the bronze medal. He then took it in his hand and dropped it onto the podium and walked away. The IOC was incensed and disqualified Samadov, leaving the bronze medal position open. He apologized the next day, but the ruling stood, and the International Weightlifting Federation banned him for life.
|4||Chon Chol-Ho||23||North Korea||PRK||365.0|
|15||Dave Morgan||27||Great Britain||GBR||345.0|
|16||Julio César Luna||19||Venezuela||VEN||342.5|
|17||Tony Urrutia||34||United States||USA||340.0|
|20||Andrew Callard||24||Great Britain||GBR||325.0|
|23||Ali Reza Azari||24||Iran||IRI||315.0|
|24||Alphonse Hercule Matam||19||Cameroon||CMR||307.5|
|27||Pieter Smith||28||South Africa||RSA||270.0|
|AC||Arnold Franqui||29||Puerto Rico||PUR||[135.0]|
|AC||Ibragim Samadov||24||Unified Team||EUN||[370.0]||DQ|
|AC||Yeom Dong-Cheol||23||South Korea||KOR||DNF|