Weightlifting at the Commonwealth Games

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Harry Hayfield
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Weightlifting at the Commonwealth Games

Post by Harry Hayfield » Thu Sep 21, 2017 7:54 pm

(to be included in the Library when the article is finished)

Preface
The Commonwealth Games are a four-yearly multisport event, held at the midpoint between Olympic Games, that whilst held in the spirit of the Olympics, is only able to be attended by members of the Commonwealth of Nations. This Commonwealth all have one thing in common, they all recognise the monarch of the United Kingdom as their head of state. The Games first started in 1930 when after the Imperial Conference of 1926 the dominions of the then British Empire (Australia, Canada, the Irish Free State, Newfoundland, New Zealand and South Africa) agreed to compete on the field of sport as equal nations and so in 1930 in Hamilton, the British Empire Games were formally launched however due to the Second World War the Games proposed for 1942 and 1946 were cancelled. When they were re-established in 1950 when the Games were held in Auckland, a sport that had been at the start of the Olympics made its Games debut, weightlifting and so I give to you a summary, and detailed report of the history of weightlifting at first the British Empire and Commonwealth Games (as those Games were called from 1950 until 1970, the British Commonwealth Games from 1970 to 1978 and then the Commonwealth Games from 1978 until the last Games in Glasgow before the nations of the Commonwealth meet again on the Gold Coast in Queensland for the twenty first Commonwealth Games)

The 1950 British Empire and Commonwealth Games held in Auckland, New Zealand between February 4th – 11th 1950

Results
Bantamweight Class (56kg / 123lbs)
Gold Medalist: Tho Fook Hung (Malaysia) 297kg / 653lbs
Silver Medalist: Rosaire Smith (Canada) 279kg / 614lbs
Bronze Medalist: Keith Capel (Australia) 272kg / 598lbs

Featherweight Class (60kg / 132lbs)
Gold Medalist: Koh Eng Tong (Malaysia) 310½kg / 683lbs
Silver Medalist: Julian Creus (England) 304kg / 669lbs
Bronze Medalist: Barrie Engelbrecht (South Africa) 290kg / 638lbs

Lightweight Class (67½kg /148½lbs)
Gold Medalist: Jim Halliday (England) 344½kg / 758lbs
Silver Medalist: Thong Saw Pak (Malaysia) 333kg / 733lbs
Bronze Medalist: Vern Barberis (Australia) 333kg / 733lbs
Pak awarded the silver on bodyweight rule

Middleweight Class (75kg / 165lbs)
Gold Medalist: Gerry Gratton (Canada) 360½kg / 793lbs
Silver Medalist: Bruce George (New Zealand) 335½kg / 738lbs
Bronze Medalist: Fred Griffin (Australia) 326½kg / 718lbs

Light Heavyweight Class (82½kg / 181½lbs)
Gold Medalist: Jim Varaleau (Canada) 369½kg / 813lbs
Silver Medalist: Issy Bloomberg (South Africa) 369½kg / 813lbs
Bronze Medalist: Tan Kim Bee (Malaysia) 347kg / 763lbs
Varaleau awarded the gold on bodyweight rule

Heavyweight Class (110kg / 242lbs)
Gold Medalist: Harold Cleghorn (New Zealand) 408kg / 898lbs
Silver Medalist: Ray Magee (Australia) 376kg / 827lbs
No bronze medal awarded as class only had two entries

Summary
Weightlifting was at the heart of the Olympic Games and yet it took a full 54 years before it made its debut at the Commonwealth Games, indeed it has been suggested that the Victorian vaudeville stars were part of the reason for this delay. After all, Great Britain had an Olympic gold medal winner at those first Olympics, trained by no less a personage that Eugene Sandow, himself a veteran of the stage famed for his display of muscular development. Most people believe it was the success of the London Olympics in 1948 that made the concept of a contest at the 1950 Commonwealth Games become acceptable so that the organisers of those Games in Auckland announced there would be a contest and their confidence was rewarded with 28 athletes from eight nations taking part. Jim Halliday won his class, and set three new Games records in the process, but it was Malaysia who ruled the roost winning the unofficial team contest over Canada by a single point (three points for a gold, two points for a silver and one point for a bronze)

https://teara.govt.nz/en/video/40882/ha ... games-1950
Video (hosted by the Government of New Zealand) showing Cleghorn's gold medal winning lift
"Great heavens, what is there to adulate in me? Am I particularly intelligent, or remarkably studious, or excruciatingly witty, or unusually accomplished, or exceptionally virtuous?"
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peter yates
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Re: Weightlifting at the Commonwealth Games

Post by peter yates » Fri Sep 22, 2017 12:35 pm

Hi Harry,
excellent report.Looking forward to more.Yes Malaysia had some really good lifters in the lighter classes in those days.Not sure how they are doing these days though. Anyone know?
Regards,Peter.
Peter Yates

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Harry Hayfield
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Re: Weightlifting at the Commonwealth Games

Post by Harry Hayfield » Fri Sep 22, 2017 1:05 pm

peter yates wrote:Hi Harry, excellent report.Looking forward to more.Yes Malaysia had some really good lifters in the lighter classes in those days.Not sure how they are doing these days though. Anyone know? Regards,Peter.
Malaysia are 10th overall on the Commonwealth Games Weightlifting Medal Table, however their last medal was in 2010
"Great heavens, what is there to adulate in me? Am I particularly intelligent, or remarkably studious, or excruciatingly witty, or unusually accomplished, or exceptionally virtuous?"
(The Duke of Dunstable, Patience by Gilbert and Sullivan)

peter yates
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Re: Weightlifting at the Commonwealth Games

Post by peter yates » Fri Sep 22, 2017 11:13 pm

Thank you Harry.
Peter Yates

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DannyBoy
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Re: Weightlifting at the Commonwealth Games

Post by DannyBoy » Sun Sep 24, 2017 6:55 am

Hey Harry, this was a good idea and a good read! I look forward to reading your further additions to the article. :)

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Harry Hayfield
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Re: Weightlifting at the Commonwealth Games

Post by Harry Hayfield » Tue Apr 03, 2018 7:41 am

The 2018 Commonwealth Games start tomorrow on the Gold Coast in Australia with the first day of competition (Thursday) seeing three weightlifting medals awarded. Therefore what I shall do is list them as they come in day by day and then complete the list going back from 1950 in a way that is easy to understand (as I am not sure lists and lists of information is all that easy to read)
"Great heavens, what is there to adulate in me? Am I particularly intelligent, or remarkably studious, or excruciatingly witty, or unusually accomplished, or exceptionally virtuous?"
(The Duke of Dunstable, Patience by Gilbert and Sullivan)

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DannyBoy
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Re: Weightlifting at the Commonwealth Games

Post by DannyBoy » Tue Apr 03, 2018 11:51 am

Harry Hayfield wrote:The 2018 Commonwealth Games start tomorrow on the Gold Coast in Australia with the first day of competition (Thursday) seeing three weightlifting medals awarded. Therefore what I shall do is list them as they come in day by day and then complete the list going back from 1950 in a way that is easy to understand (as I am not sure lists and lists of information is all that easy to read)
Sounds good. I'm not sure, but I don't know that we get much, if any, coverage of the Commonwealth Games here in the US. Which I suppose is understandable since we're not part of the Commonwealth of Nations. Anyway... Thanks, Harry! :)

peter yates
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Re: Weightlifting at the Commonwealth Games

Post by peter yates » Tue Apr 03, 2018 6:30 pm

Hi Harry,
good man, thanks for doing this, it does make it easier to follow. Hey Danny maybe YouTube will show some highlights.
Regards,Peter.
Peter Yates

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Harry Hayfield
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Re: Weightlifting at the Commonwealth Games

Post by Harry Hayfield » Tue Apr 03, 2018 8:33 pm

peter yates wrote:Hi Harry, good man, thanks for doing this, it does make it easier to follow. Hey Danny maybe YouTube will show some highlights. Regards,Peter.
I am hoping that the Commonwealth Games channel will indeed show something as the IOC / IPC channel for the Winter Olympics / Paralympics was very disappointing. All the medal ceremonies were blocked in the UK because the BBC / Channel 4 were the national broadcasters.
"Great heavens, what is there to adulate in me? Am I particularly intelligent, or remarkably studious, or excruciatingly witty, or unusually accomplished, or exceptionally virtuous?"
(The Duke of Dunstable, Patience by Gilbert and Sullivan)

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Harry Hayfield
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Re: Weightlifting at the Commonwealth Games

Post by Harry Hayfield » Sun May 06, 2018 3:45 pm

Now that the local elections are over, and I have a clear spell when nothing is happening (at long last) I shall endeavour to get the 2018 results posted over the next few days and then start to work backwards creating a record for each weight class going back to 1930.
"Great heavens, what is there to adulate in me? Am I particularly intelligent, or remarkably studious, or excruciatingly witty, or unusually accomplished, or exceptionally virtuous?"
(The Duke of Dunstable, Patience by Gilbert and Sullivan)

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