Ali Jawad concludes powerlifting Paralympics career with sixth-place finish in Tokyo

British athlete won silver at Rio 2016 but said he was not expected to medal in Tokyo

British powerlifter Ali Jawad signed off his final Paralympic Games with a sixth-placed finish in the men's -59kg final in Tokyo on Friday.

Jawad, who made his Paralympics debut at London 2012 and won silver in Rio de Janeiro four years later, produced a best lift of 164kg. He was unsuccessful with his third weight of 166kg.

China's Yongkai Qi won the gold medal with a leading lift of 187kg - a weight matched by silver medallist Sherif Osman of Egypt, but it was Qi who took the title due to his body weight being lighter.

El Salvador's Herbert Aceituno took bronze with a best lift of 184kg.

For Jawad, his efforts in Tokyo bring to an end a roller-coaster Paralympic journey. Jawad was set to make his Games debut at Beijing 2008 before he was struck by Crohn's disease on the eve of the competition. The disease threatened his career numerous times over the years and almost killed him in 2010.

Jawad recovered to book his place at his home Games in London, where he narrowly and controversially missed out on a medal, finishing fourth after a contentious judges’ decision. He bounced back to win World Championship gold in Dubai in 2014 before taking silver in Rio two years later.

Jawad has said Tokyo will be his last Paralympic Games and plans to retire after competing at next year's Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.

Speaking to The National before booking his place at the Paralympics, Jawad admitted that he was not expecting to medal in Tokyo

“If I do make it to the Games, it will be to make up the numbers,” Jawad said. “It won’t be for any sort of medal, let alone gold.

“That old Ali’s gone, and people need to accept that I’m not competitive any more. I am going to fail in terms of having anything around my neck, but I’m not going to fail to apply myself in the best way I can to push Crohn’s to the very limit of where anyone’s ever pushed it."

Updated: August 27th 2021, 9:33 AM
EDITOR'S PICKS
NEWSLETTERS