Saikhom Mirabai Chanu is no stranger to Indian sports enthusiasts. The Manipuri weightlifter competes in the Women’s 49kg category and has been one of the bright young sports stars in the country in the last five years. She made her international presence felt when she bagged the silver in the 48kg category at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. Two years later at the Rio Olympics, Mirabai failed to lift any of the weights in clean and jerk to bow out of the showpiece event in Brazil.
However, she made an excellent comeback by winning back-to-back gold medals at the 2017 World Championships in Anaheim, USA and the 2018 Commonwealth Games, in Gold Coast, Australia. After missing out on the Asian Games and the World Championships in the same year, she could only manage a fourth-place finish at the 2019 World Championships in Thailand. In 2021, she set a new world record in the clean and jerk when she lifted 119kgs at the 2021 Asian weightlifting championships in Tashkent.
Age - 26
Sports/Discipline - Weightlifting
Working Ranking - 2nd in the 49kg category
First Olympic Games - 2016
— Bronze - new world record women’s 49 kg category, lifted 205 kg (86 kg in snatch; 119 kg in clean and jerk) 2021, Tashkent, Uzbekistan.
— Gold - women’s 48 kg category, lifted 194 kg (83 kg snatch; 111 kg in clean and jerk), 2019, Qatar International Cup
— Gold - women’s 48 kg category, lifted 194 kg (85 kg Snatch; 105 kg Clean and Jerk) 2017 World Weightlifting Championships, in Anaheim, USA.
— Gold - women’s 48 kg category, lifted 169kg (79 kg in snatch; 90 kg in clean and jerk) 2016, South Asian Games, in Guwahati, Assam.
— Silver - women’s 48kg category, lifted 170 kg, 2014, in Glasgow, Scotland.
— Gold - new Commonwealth record women’s 48kg category, lifted a total of 196 kg (86 kg in snatch; 110 kg clean and jerk) 2018, Gold Coast, Australia.
Tokyo Olympics Qualification
The former world champion has qualified on the basis of her world ranking points. The Indian superstar lifter is ranked second in the women’s 49kg category with 4133,6172 points in her kitty. She was earlier ranked fourth, but North Korea’s withdrawal from Tokyo 2020 has propelled her to the second spot.
The 26-year-old set a new world record in the clean and jerk event at the 2021 Asian weightlifting championships in Tashkent.
2016 Rio Olympics Performance
Chanu failed to record a successful lift in all three attempts in the clean and jerk section. Thus, she crashed out of the games without any medal.