Russian athlete Adam Malikov

© Yegor Aleev/TASS

MOSCOW, April 1. /TASS/. European Championships in weightlifting kicks off on Saturday in the Croatian split. The Russian team is represented by sixteen athletes who will compete for the top spots.

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Russian national team in Croatia will have the first major tournament after major reforms over the past year in domestic weightlifting. Due to multiple violations anti-doping rules, the Russian team was in full force excluded from participation in the Olympic games in Rio de Janeiro. The national Federation in the fall was headed by Maxim Agapitov, changed also coaches the national team and reshuffle allowed the Russian weightlifters to perform in split.

Russia in this tournament will be represented by 16 athletes . This is Natalia Khlestkina, Anastasia Ivanova (both weight category up to 58 kg), Tim Turieva, Tatiana Aleeva (to 63 kg), Anastasia Romanov (up to 69 kg), Maria Vostrikova (75 kg), Diana Stieva (up to 90 kg) and Tatiana Kashirina (over 90 kg). In the men’s team included Felix Alibekov (up to 62 kg), Oleg Chen (to 69 kg), Sergey Petrov (to 77 kg), Artem Okulov (85 kg), Egor Klimonov, Adam Malikov (both – up to 94 kg), Davit bejanyan (105 kg) and Ruslan albegov (over 105 kg).

According to Agapitova, the possible attention of the drug services in split not to be confused by Russian athletes, who have become accustomed to compete in this mode. “We are absolutely open to all, not hiding and not afraid,” – said the head of weightlifting Federation of Russia.

Agapitov also noted that before the updated the national team in split is primarily the task of becoming a single entity, a real team, strictly abide by the discipline. Although the medal plans, according to the President of the Federation, has not been canceled, each athlete will fight for the top places and medals of extras in split will not.

The first post-Olympic tournament has the status of qualifying, most teams are in the process of updating. For the Russian team championship in split, said Agapitov, especially important in terms of building a strong Foundation on which you can rely when reaching higher goals in the future.

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16 sets of medals in split

Competition in split will be held April 1-8, the first medals will be awarded on Sunday. Only in the European championship will be the winners in 16 categories, eight for men and women, minimum age of participants is limited to 15 years. The championship will be held in the sports hall “Gripe” in split, the largest resort city in Croatia on the Adriatic coast.

April 1, before the opening of the tournament split will host the Congress of the European weightlifting Federation.

The first European championship in weightlifting was held in 1896 in Rotterdam (the Netherlands), in the current format of weight categories the competition is held since 1998. A year ago, the championship was held in førde, a Norwegian, on account of the Russian team – gold medal Natalia Khlestkina (63 kg), silver Felix Alibekova (62), Sergei Petrov (69) and Diana Akhmetova (63) and bronze George Kuptsova (94).