Recent disqualification of Uzbekistan lifter has now given Fernando Reis to become the first Brazilian ever to win an International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) World Championships medal – more than two years after the event.
He has been promoted to third place in the 2018 IWF World Championships after the disqualification of an Uzbekistan lifter, Rustam Djangabaev was accused of sample swapping and was subsequently ban for four-year.
“It’s not the way I dreamed of doing it but it’s a World Championships medal, the first one for Brazil and I’ll take it,” 31-year-old Reis confessed.
“This is going to help me keep pushing for the Olympic Games, it’s a good motivation.”
Super-heavyweight Djangabaev, who finished sixth at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, one place behind Reis, was caught when irregularities were spotted by the Athlete Passport Management Unit from the International Testing Agency, which now oversees all anti-doping procedures for the IWF.
The ITA described the case of Djangabaev, 27, as “peculiar”.
Djangabaev finished in bronze-medal position in Ashgabat in Turkmenistan in 2018 with a total of 447 kilograms, the joint second-best effort of all his results listed on the IWF website.
The results management process was underway when the APMU (Athlete Passport Management Unit)… identified suspicious values which led the ITA to build a case for… urine manipulation based on DNA analysis evidencing that a sample allegedly provided by the athlete on 30 May 2018 did not originate from him.”
That led to Djangabaev being additionally charged under Article 2.2 of the IWF’s anti-doping rules, which covers evidence-based violations rather than sample analysis.
It was this week the IWF did finally inform the Brazilian Weightlifting Federation that Reis had won a medal, leading its president Enrique Montero to say, “Fernando Reis’s bronze medal means a lot to our sport.
“It serves to motivate our young athletes and help in an even bigger growth in weightlifting in Brazil.”
Reis is hoping to “double up” with a podium finish at the delayed Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games too.
“Everything is going fantastically well right now, training has never been better, my body feels good and my mind is in right place”, he said.