For a long time, it was unclear whether and at what location this year’s World Weightlifting Championships would take place. Now the International Weightlifting Federation (IMF) has announced a date including the venue.
Actually, there are no world championships in the years of the Olympic Games, but Covid-19 also turned the competition calendar of the IWF upside down. After the cancellation of the World Championships last year, an event has now been scheduled for 2021 and will take the best weightlifters in the world to Tashkent, Uzbekistan.
The competitions are planned for the period from December 7 to 17 and, like the Junior World Championships in May this year will be held within the capital of the Central Asian state.
Whether and to what extent German athletes will participate in the competitions is unclear at the present time. The registration of a German team has been made, but participation has not yet been finally confirmed.
Even though the hosting of the World Championships offers a sporting highlight, a much more important sporting event is expected after this event. With an elective congress scheduled for December 20 and 21 the IWF is looking for its first permanent representative after Tamás Aján. The 82-year-old Hungarian has already been followed by three interim presidents since his abdication in April 2020.
Initially, the American Ursula Papandrea led the association, before she was deposed by her colleagues of the executive board in October of last year and replaced by the Thai Intarat Yodbangtoey(We reported). But his tenure was of record-breaking short duration, as he had to leave the post directly due to the current doping and corruption allegations against him and his country.
Since that day, Dr. Michael Irani from Great Britain has been leading the IWF, but in many places, he lacked the decisiveness necessary in the current situation and too often tied up with the “old guard” of IWF board members.
But after the adoption of a new statute at the end of August, the chances for sustainable reform of international weightlifting are better than before. These changes will also be decisive for the continued existence within the Olympic program and will certainly also be viewed critically from the management offices of the IOC.