Pakistani weightlifter Talha Talib, who impressed millions of sports enthusiasts around the globe courtesy with his performance in the Tokyo Olympics, said Monday he was confident about bagging the gold medal for Pakistan in the next edition of the tournament.

Competing in the 67kg men’s weightlifting contest, Talha was on top of the race for a while before being surpassed by athletes from China, Colombia, and Italy in the final attempts.

After lifting 150kg in the snatch lift, Talha fell while attempting 166kg. He lifted 170kg in his final attempt to have an overall lift of 320kg.

Appearing on the morning show Geo Pakistan, Talib thanked Pakistanis for showering him with love and affection and said he went into the competition aiming to give his best performance.

The Olympian’s road to the international event was not a smooth one. He did not have proper equipment to train with and had to make-do with a makeshift gym at a school.

“There was no training camp where I could train for the Olympics,” he said. “I faced a lot of difficulties. However, my father encouraged me,” added the weightlifter.

He also credited the Pakistan Olympic Association for encouraging him. “They [Pakistan Olympic Association] paid for my expenses [for the Tokyo Olympics] and supported me,” he said. “I was motivated when they told me to keep on training as they will look after financial support and other matters for me.”

Talib, who has already started training for upcoming championships ever since he arrived in Pakistan, said that “With proper training and facilities, winning a gold medal for Pakistan won’t be difficult in the next Olympics.” But he added that he “direly needed” international weight standards to train with.

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