Olympics: Thai Sopita wins first Rio weightlifting gold

Sopita Tanasan of Thailand holds up her gold medal for the women's 48kg category of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games Weightlifting events at the Riocentro in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on August 6.
Sopita Tanasan of Thailand holds up her gold medal for the women's 48kg category of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games Weightlifting events at the Riocentro in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on August 6.PHOTO: EPA

RIO DE JANEIRO (AFP) - Thailand's Sopita Tanasan blew away the opposition to grab the first gold medal of the weightlifting competition at the Rio Games on Saturday.

The 21-year-old dominated the women's 48kg, lifting 92kg in the snatch and 108kg in the clean and jerk for a total of 200kg to finish first in weightlifting's lightest category.

Pint-sized Sopita, a regular lifter in the 53kg class, took full advantage of the withdrawal through injury this week of hot Chinese favourite Hou Zhihui to win with ease.

The 1.54m Thai lifted 8kg more than silver medallist Sri Wahyuni Agustiani of Indonesia while evergreen Japanese lifter Hiromi Mayake took bronze with a total of 188kg.

Sopita is the fourth women's weightlifter from Thailand to win an Olympic gold medal.