Crystal Palace weightlifters in last-chance Olympic saloon
This weekend is do or die time for Halil Zorba in his quest to make the Olympic Games, writes Graham Moody.
The Crystal Palace-based weightlifter competes in the British championships on Saturday, which is the last chance for lifters to put their case forward for Olympic selection.
Fellow Palace lifters Jo Calvino and Emily Godley will also be competing and looking for the A standards in their categories but both stand good chances of getting Games places having achieved the B standard at the European Championships last month.
Zorba, below, has achieved the 291kg B standard for the 77kg category but not in a major competition and, with arch rival Jack Oliver also closing in on the 309kg A standard, the 23-year-old knows nothing short of the best will do.
“For me to go to the Olympics, realistically I need to have the A standard,” he said.
“It’s quite nerve-racking that it all comes down to this, the decider.
“My training has been going all right and I have been getting the 300kg mark regularly, so I only need to push a little bit more to get 309kg.
“I am going there with the intention of trying to secure myself one of the three spots for the Olympics and I feel confident – I am a full 77kg category lifter now and have settled into it.
“I would say I am one of the contenders and, hopefully, I can get the total.”