SINGAPORE - Singapore teenager Matthew Yap broke the world squat record in the men's Under-66kg sub-junior division at the World Classic Powerlifting Championships on Sunday (June 18).
After picking up a slight cramp during his first attempt, the 18-year-old skipped his second attempt to recover from it, before hitting 208kg on his final attempt in Minsk, Belarus.
Yap, who risked a non-medal finish if his final effort did not go well, said: "When I unracked the bar, I was praying as hard as I could to not cramp up at all.
"After I racked back the bar (and got the world record), there was a huge relief and I was very emotional. I remember just tearing up and being super thankful.
"I was thinking of all the obstacles we had to face and overcome. At that moment, nothing could break me."
The previous world record of 207.5kg was held by Sweden's Eddie Berglund, set in Texas last year.
This result adds a gold medal to Yap's bronze (130kg) in the bench press and silver (550.5kg) in the overall standings at the competition, which ends on June 25.
His 212.5kg dead lift placed him sixth in the category.
Overall winner Dmitriy Chebanov of Kazakhstan totalled 582.5kg.
Another Singaporean, Kenji Loy, was ninth with a combined 375kg in the sub-junior under-59kg division.