Okinawan weightlifter Yoichi Itokazu earns ticket to Rio
The Japan Weightlifting Association announced May 28th that Yoichi Itokazu from Okinawa was selected to compete in men’s 62-kg division in the Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games in August 2016. Itokazu will be the only man representing Japan in Rio in weightlifting.
The games in Rio will also be the first Olympics for 25-year-old Itokazu who, after having been defeated for a chance to compete at the London Olympic Games in 2012, has been eager for a ticket to the next Olympics. In April, he won the first prize in the men’s 62-kg division in the 2016 Asian Weightlifting Championships in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, which qualified him for a spot in the Olympic Games in Rio.
In his interview, Itokazu said he would do his best to win a medal in Rio, and would concentrate on practicing hard from now on.
He is the third Okinawan to have secured a place in the Japanese team for the Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games, along with cyclists Yukiya Shinjo and Kohei Uchima.