Kate Diaz bags weightlifting silver at Arafura Games

DARWIN, Australia - Kate Diaz won the Philippines' first medal in the 2019 Arafura Games after capturing the silver medal in the women's weightlifting competitions yesterday (Saturday) at the Darwin Convention Centre.

The 15-year-old Diaz lifted 115 kilograms after tallying 50 kilograms in the snatch and 65 kilograms in the clean and jerk in the women's 45kg division to give the country a silver in Day 1 of the Philippine campaign here supported by the Philippine Sports Commission and Standard Insurance.

Shi Yue Shan of Chinese Taipei won the gold after lifting 120 kilograms following a 53 in the snatch and 67 in the clean and jerk.

Diaz said it was a learning experience for her after she fell short of a gold for failing to lift 70 kilograms in her second and third attempt in the clean and jerk.

"I learned that no matter what, I should always have focus and concentration," said Diaz, who is eyeing a stint in this year's Southeast Asian Games.

Kate is the niece of Olympic silver medalist and Asian games gold medalist Hidilyn Diaz. She is the youngest athlete in the Philippine contingent to the Arafura Games.

Diaz and Shi competed for the gold after about 30 weightlifters from across all weight categories failed to compete for not submitting the Anti-Doping Administration and Management Systems (ADAMS), a document now required by the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF).

Athletes from athletics and swimming are still competing for a medal as of press time.

Meanwhile, the Philippine muay team will see action Sunday at the Darwin Convention Centre with Jenelyn Olsim opening the squad's campaign in the senior female elite A -54kg semifinals.

Phillip Delarmino and Ryan Jakiri will also compete in the men's -57kg and -63kg respectively, while Ariel Lampacan will battle in the -54kg division in the next few days.

National coach Billy Alumno said the Arafura Games muay competition is a qualifier for the 2021 World Games in which the gold medalists in the -57kg and -63kg class will automatically clinch a berth in the World Games.

ESPN5's Chiqui Pablo contributed to this report.