India arguably is the best team as far as weightlifting in the Commonwealth Games is concerned. However, it will get some stiff competition from the Canadians who are well-prepared for the mega event.

“The big fight is between India and Canada,” announced Piere Bergeron, coach of the Canadian weightlifting team for the last four Commonwealth Games. “India is a little stronger and they have local support,” he said while talking to The Hindu here on Saturday.

“But we have two secret weapons,” said Bergeron about the Indian origin lifters in the side. The Canadian coach hoped the presence of Jasbir Singh (62kg) and Parminder Singh Phangura (+105kg) would prompt some of the local fans to cheer the Indian origin lifters.

However, he was realistic as far as setting the target was concerned. “India should get around 10-12 medals, while we are aiming at six to eight,” Bergeron said. His analysis was based on the fact that both the countries were good enough in the men and women competitions. At the Melbourne Games, Canada had bagged seven medals, while India gathered nine.

“In the women's section, Nigeria is strong. Australia and England are also good in men's competition,” he said.

Balanced

Talking about the formation of his own team, Bergeron said it was a balanced side. “It is the first major Games for nine of our 15 lifters,” he said, adding that the Canadians had to adapt quickly to the hot Delhi climate.

Ace Canadian woman lifter Christine Girard (69kg) was hopeful about achieving her dream of winning the gold here. “Four years ago I had promised myself to be here after getting the silver in Melbourne. It is fun to be here,” she said.

Christine, who recently achieved a seventh place finish in the World championship in Turkey, said she was ready for the challenge from the home contestants. “The Indians are strong and once we saw them training. It is hard competition and I have to fight for the podium. The big game will be on the platform,” she said.

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