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Pera puts in PB before Pacific Games

Friday 26 August 2011 | Published in Regional

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Jet-setting weightlifter Sirla Pera has returned to Rarotonga from competition in China with new personal best lifts under the belt or over it as the case may be just days before he is set to compete in the South Pacific Games.

Pera, one of three weightlifters to represent the Cook Islands at the New Caledonia Games, put in his best ever lifts at the 2011 Universiade held in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen between August 12 and 23.

The 105-kilogram category competitor lifted 141 kilograms in the clean and jerk section of the competition and 112 kilograms in the snatch.

The postings broke his previous personal bests of 130 kilograms and 110 kilograms respectively and topped his Commonwealth Games efforts.

The Cook Islander was the only Pacific island entrant in the mens weightlifting at the Universiade. He faced a tough competition from the best weightlifters across the world.

Pera did not come home with a medal for the University of the South Pacific from the Universiade, but he said the competition was a great warm-up for the South Pacific Games.

Im looking forward to the next one, I reckon I can do more, Pera said.

Ill just be trying to better these (personal best) weights by maybe one or two kilograms. Ill be trying for my best.

Pera said he would continue his training schedule at Rarotonga before he heads to New Caledonia on Tuesday and has modest hopes for the Games.

Im just trying for my best. If a medal is the result, then Ill be happy, but Im just trying my best, he said.

Two other Cook Islanders competed at the Shenzhen Universiade alongside Pera.

Louisa Manico vied for medals in table tennis and Rotana Howard hit the golf course. Neither of them came home with medals from the Universiade.

Of the three, Pera is the only one going on to the South Pacific Games.

There, Sirla will join his older brother Samuel Pera Jnr at Noumea as well as New Zealand-based Luisa Peters for the weightlifting competition.