News > Pan-Armenian News > Nazik Avdalyan world champion in weightlifting
Nazik Avdalyan (69 kg) lifted 119 kg in the snatch and 147 kg in the clean and jerk, with a total of 266 kg, winning the small gold in both categories and thus the big gold medal in her weight category at World Weightlifting Championships 2009 in Goyang, South Korea.
She became the world champion. This was the first gold medal for Armenia in any game following the 2008 Olympic Games.
Avdalyan said that she could feel the support of her people and this helped her maintain herself calm and concentrate on her part.
The weightlifting victory happened on 25 November 2009, the same day Gagik Tsarukyan, President of the Olympic Committee of Armenia and founder and current leader of Prosperous Armenia Party, was celebrating his birthday. "It was a pleasant surprise for his birthday," Avdalyan noted.
Armenia's women's weightlifting team brought home also the bronze medal in the 75 kg category, achieved by Hripsime Khurshudyan, who lifted 120 kg in the snatch and 147 kg in the clean and jerk, with a total combined weight of 267 kg, assuring her the big bronze medal in her weight category.
Armenia's weightlifting team ranked 4th in overall medals, with China in first place, followed by Kazakhstan in second, and South Korea in third. This gave Armenia the leading European postition in weightlifing.
The Armenian athletes were given a heroes’ welcome at Zvartnots airport on their return from South Korea. The last time an Armenian weightlifter won at world championship was in 1989, when Israel Militonyan managed to win gold in competitions in Athens still as part of the Soviet team.
After independence Armenia has achieved ten international championship medals in different sports including 2 times world champions in Chess.
Weightlifting Federation Secretary-General Pashik Alaverdyan said that “we felt that our work of many years would finally produce results... In weightlifting it is a little easier to make forecasts than in other sports.”
Nazik is also a master of sport in acrobatics. Her spectacular backward flip after winning the first postion shows great flexibility (see video clip)
In the men’s section, Arakel Mirzoyan (69 kg) and Tigran Martirosyan (77 kg), both 21 years old, won silver medals.
Armenia first appeared in the Olympic competitions as an independent state in Atlanta 1996 Games, when Greco-roman wrestler Armen Nazarian won the country's first Olympic gold medal in the flyweight division.
Photo: Gold medalist Nazik Avdalyan of Armenia, center, silver medalist Oxana Slivenko of Russia, left, and bronze medalist Zhang Shaoling of Macao pose during medal ceremony of the women's group A 69-kilogram category of the World Weightlifting Championships in Goyang, west of Seoul, South Korea, Friday, Nov. 27, 2009. Nazik won the gold medal scoring total of 266 kilograms (AP photo).
Video clip showing Nazik Avdalyan's march to victory with Armenian dance backdrop
Nazik Avdalyan world champion in weightlifting