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London 2012 Olympic Games: Despite oversleeping, Games debutant Jack Oliver breaks records in weightlifting competition

Jack Oliver
Jack Oliver

by Alex Hoad at the Olympic Games

Weighlifter Jack Oliver overslept on the morning of his Olympic Games debut and had to be roused from bed by his frantic coach.

The 21-year-old Bexleyheath student – who says he likes to sleep for up to 14 hours a day to recharge his bulging muscles – was in danger of missing the start of the men’s 77kg competition, which began at 10am at ExCel.

However he then proceeded to produce a superb display, recording a British record and breaking two personal bests.

The 21-year-old Sidcup-born star – who trains at the Europa Weightlifting Club in Erith – eventually finished fourth of a group of five lifters, and after the second group went on Wednesday night, he finished a fine 10th overall in his debut Games.

He admitted: "I woke up an hour late this morning to the sound of my coach banging on my bedroom door. The sleep did me good and I had less time to think about the competition."

Oliver (pictured), who now attends university in Leeds, received a huge ovation ahead of his first attempt at 135kg in the snatch, but was unable to lift it, though he recovered his composure quickly to successfully lift it the second time, moments later.

With huge backing from the partisan home crowd, he then managed 140kg with his final lift of the round to lie fourth at the half-way stage.

After a 15-minute break, Oliver opened the clean and jerk round with a convincing lift of 160kg before improving his personal best of 164kg by 1kg with his second attempt.

The competition finished on a high for Oliver as he lifted 170kg with his final lift of the Games to equal the British record and set an overall total of 310kg – another new PB.

He said: "Oliver said: ""I just got on with it. I'm really pleased with the PBs especially as in the warm-up area I struggled to lift 153kg in the clean and jerk."

He admitted: "I'm convinced the crowd helped me take off 10kg from the weight on the bar with their support rather than putting it on. They were great..

"My objective was to make PBs at the Olympics and I have done it."

Alex Hoad at the Games - Twitter button
Alex Hoad at the Games - Twitter button
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