Commonwealth Games: Brilliant bronze for Didcot's Ben Watson

Ben Watson

Ben Watson

First published in Sport Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Sports reporter specialising in Rugby, Cricket and Athletics. Call me on 01865 425456

BEN Watson secured Didcot’s third medal at Glasgow 2014 with a fantastic weighlifting bronze last night.

The 24-year-old finished third on his Commonwealth Games debut after an impressive display in the 105kg category.

Watson, who is a member of the St Birinus School Weightlifting Club, closed with a total of 337kg to take third place.

In doing so, he added to the gold and bronze medals won by shooter and fellow Didcot resident and St Birinus old boy Dan Rivers.

David Katoatau took gold with 348kg to record Kiribati’s first Commonwealth title, while New Zealand’s Stanislav Chalaev bagged silver in 341.

Watson said: “I’m absolutely ecstatic, I can’t stop smiling – it’s the best feeling.

“After the snatches when I came out with a 157kg I thought I had given myself a chance, but I knew there were other guys who were stronger clean & jerkers.

“After I missed the 185kg twice, I thought I’d lost it, but I had a bit of luck on the day which we’ve been missing recently. It’s brilliant – I’m just so happy with it.

“Realistically for me, the next Commonwealth Games is my aim and hopefully I can go one or two medals better.”

Watson had led the way after the snatch with a lift of 157kg, but his total was a personal best, as was his clean and jerk score of 180kg.

The St Birinus School teaching assistant twice failed on 185kg, while Chalaeav went ahead after lifting 183.

The pair sat first and second, but knew there were heavy lifters waiting backstage in the shape of Barbadian Ivorn McKnee and Kato-atau.

McKnee had stated his intention to lift 190kg and the latter 200kg and, if both had have done so, Watson would have been out.

But McKnee failed with all three of his attempts, leaving Watson to celebrate wildly.

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