Source: Daily Express

KOTA KINABALU: Callixtus Daunis delivered the first gold medal for Sabah contingent on the opening day of the National Weightlifting Championship at Suria Sabah Shopping Mall which started on Monday.The former national trainee competed in the Men’s Senior 61kg category took the title comfortably with his total lift of 255kg (110kg Snatch, 145kg Clean & Jerk).In second place was Nur Hamizan Abu Bakar from ATM who accumulated a total weight of 239kg (104kg snatch, 135 clean & jerk) followed by Ahmad Faiz Imran of Terengganu with 231 kg (103kg  snatch, 231kg clean & jerk).

Twenty-three-year-old Callixtus is currently trained by State coach Steve Gompion in his home town Tambunan since his return from the national squad in 2015.He hopes his performance will continue to improve as his target is to make it to the Commonwealth Games in 2020.“I am happy with the win. My main target is to qualify for the Commonwealth Games in 2020, and I hope I will be able to make it  after recovering from my long-standing shoulder injury,” he said after the win.

He has a personal best of 115kg in snatch  and 150kg in clean & jerk, and the victory was also his third of the year after his earlier legs’ wins in Sarawak in June and Johor in October.At the moment he is ranked second in the country behind Muhd Aznil Bidin who won bronze in the 61kg category for Malaysia in the just concluded SEA Games in Manila.Meanwhile, more than 100 athletes from 16 contingents are taking part in the four-day competition, and the opening ceremony was officiated by Youth and Sports Ministry deputy Permanent secretary Neldin Gimbang representing the Minister Phoong Jin Zhe.In his speech, he said with weightlifting as one of the sports that have produced many athletes to represent Malaysia in the international stage including some from Sabah, more such competition should be held as it not only provides athletes from all over the country the opportunity to evaluate their performance but can also serve as a platform for them to get selected and represent the country. 

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