By Waylon Galvez
With a few adjustments in mind, Rio Olympics veteran Hidilyn Daz hopes to get the right focus, timing and condition for a good showing in the Asian Championship set April 16-25 in Kazakhstan.
The 28-year-old Diaz and her “Team HD” are set to fly Thursday to Malaysia for a two-month training camp at the Bukit Posa Taining Center.
“Very important kasi yung training camp sa akin, mas makaka-focus ako,” said Diaz after her workout with Chinese coach Kaiwen Gao Sunday at the weightlifting gym of the Rizal Memorial Sports Complex in Vito Cruz, Manila.
“Sa timing konting adjustment, and sa conditioning ma-sustain ko kasi nakabuhat na ako ng mabigat,” added Diaz, who initially had China as venue for her training camp but was forced to hold it elsewhere after the coronavirus outbreak.
Last month, Diaz bagged the gold medal in the 55kg women’s category of the 2020 Roma World Cup in Italy.
She had a total lift of 212kgs after her combined best lifts of 94kgs in the snatch event and 119kgs in clean and jerk in the World Cup, a qualifying tournament for Tokyo Olympics this year.
On both her final attempts in the two categories, Diaz tried but failed to complete – or ‘no lift’ – at 95kgs in snatch and 122kgs in clean and jerk, indicating she can still improve on these numbers for the Asian Championship.
Aside from Gao, Diaz’s strengthening and conditioning coach Julius Narajo and massage therapist Belen Bañas are joining her in Malaysia.
Diaz said that it’s possible they will go straight to Kazakhstan from Malaysia to get a few days of training and to acclimatize to the cold weather.
“We need to be there five days before the competition, para mas maka-prepare kami sa weather,” she said.
At the moment, Diaz is at No. 5 in the International Weightlifting Federation with 3.632.0672 world ranking points, and her participation in the Asian Championship will formalize her entry to the Tokyo Olympics.
Four years ago in Rio de Janeiro, Diaz bagged the silver medal in the 56kg women’s category.