Olympic Games / Olympic Countdown - Weightlifting: Potent Bulgaria

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The Independent Online
AT the Seoul Games, Bulgaria's team went home early after two of its competitors tested positive for drugs. In Barcelona, Bulgaria have an excellent chance to make amends with a powerful team including the world lightweight champion Yoto Yotov and Nikolay Peshalov, who beat Turkey's Olympic featherweight champion Naim Suleimanoglu at this year's European Championships.

The Soviet Union won five golds and a silver in Seoul and should do well as the Unified Team, with possible super-heavyweight gold and silver.

The top United States contenders include Mario Martinez, 35, the 1984 silver medallist, and 21-year-old Mark Henry, both are in the super-heavyweight class.

The United States has the second-best record with 15 gold, 16 silver and 10 bronze medals. The Soviet Union led with 39-21-3 while Bulgaria is third at 9-11-3.

Britain's main hopes lie with David Morgan and Andrew Davies. 'Morgan has finished fourth at the last two Games, we are hoping he can go one better,' John Lear, the team coach, said.

Thirty medals will be at stake in 10 categories ranging from 52 kilograms (flyweight) to over 110kg (super-heavyweight). The event will be staged at the 4,000- capacity Espana Industrial Hall.

BRITISH TEAM: 75kg: A Morgan. 82.5kg: A Callard; D Morgan. 90kg: K Boxall; P May. 100kg: A Saxton. 110kg: A Davies; R Kopka.

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