AWC 2024 Day 7: Djuraev makes big statement ahead of Paris 2024. GETTY IMAGES

Uzbekistan won its first gold medal at the 2024 Asian Weightlifting Championships to the delight of the home crowd in Tashkent as Tokyo 2020 champion Akbar Djuraev became the Asian champion in the 109kg category.

The 24-year-old weightlifter from Uzbekistan struggled a lot after the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) changed the Olympic weight classes. He tried his luck in the super-heavyweight category, but couldn't compete with the heaviest athletes and eventually decided to drop down to 102kg. 

And today, in front of his home crowd, he announced himself as one of the contenders for Paris 2024. Djuraev won the title with a total of 400 kg (180+220), which puts him third in the Olympic rankings in the 102 kg category.

Five of the 13 registered athletes in this weight class did not compete, as they were in Tashkent for the weigh-in and to compete in the Olympic qualifying tournament. Three other athletes failed to get a total.

Bekdoolot Rasulbekov won the silver medal in the clean and jerk and the total with 173-213-386. Po_Jen Chen from Taipei was second in the snatch and third in the clean and jerk and total with 176-206-386. Korea's Yeon Hak Jang won bronze in the snatch but failed in the clean and jerk.

The other two gold medals of the day went to Korean athletes. Ha Je Yun won the women's 87 kg category. She was second in the snatch and first in the clean & jerk and total with 100-130-230. Nigora Suvonova of Uzbekistan won the snatch (101 kg) but was second in the clean & jerk and total with 229 kg. Maghsoudi Kizhan of Iran won 3 bronze medals with 96-117-213.

2023 World champion Hye-Jeong Park was the best in the women's +87 kg category. She had 128 kg in the snatch, 165 kg in the clean & jerk and 293 kg in the total. Her compatriot Young Hee Son was second with 127-160-287. Akmal Nurul from Indonesia was third.