Host City: London, Great Britain
Venue(s): ExCeL, Newham, London
Date Started: August 6, 2012
Date Finished: August 6, 2012
Format: Total of best lifts in snatch and clean & jerk determined placement. Ties broken by lightest bodyweight.
In the men’s heavyweight weightlifting event at the 2012 Summer Olympics, three potential favorites withdrew from the competition before it even began. Andrey Aryamnov, the defending Olympic champion who held all but one of the world and Olympic records, suffered an injury to his thigh during the season and bowed out of defending his title. Defending World and 2011 European Champion Khadzhimurat Akkayev of Russia, a former competitor in the middle-heavyweight class who had won silver and bronze at the 2004 and 2008 Olympics respectively, was on the start list, but dropped out with a sore back. The same fate befell his compatriot Dmitry Klokov, 2008 silver medalist, 2005 World Champion, and 2010 and 2011 runner-up, among other accolades. These withdrawals left Marcin Dołęga of Poland, three times World Champion (2006, 2009, and 2010) as the runaway favorite.
There were more surprises in the snatch competition, when Dołęga failed to lift 190 kg in three attempts and was eliminated. Had he been successful, he would have finished this part of the event in first, as only his compatriot Bartłomiej Bonk, 2011 European bronze medalist, was able to lift that weight and, because he had a higher body weight than Dołęga, would have been ranked lower. The next highest lift was 185 kg and it was achieved by three competitors, including Oleksiy Torokhtiy of Ukraine, 2011 world bronze medalist. In the clean and jerk portion, Bonk failed in his first attempt at 219 kg, but made 220 kg in his second lift and went into first place with a six point lead. Navab Nasirshelal of Iran, bronze medalist at the 2009 Asian Championships, and Torokhtiy then both entered with successful lifts of 222 kg, putting them in third and second place respectively. Bonk, along with three others, then failed to lift 225 kg, setting the bar for gold at 410 points. The Ukrainian attempted a 226 kg lift, which would have put him in the lead with 411 points, but failed, giving Nasirshelal a chance to reach the same mark with a 227 kg lift. The Iranian succeeded and leaped into gold medal position, but Torokhtiy matched the lift and moved into first place with a score of 412. When Nasirshelal was unable to respond with the necessary 229 kg lift, Torokhtiy took the gold in a score that was notably low for the division; in the three previous editions of the Games, 412 would not have been sufficient for even a bronze medal.
|AC||Kim Hwa-Seung||27||South Korea||KOR||NM|