Ščerbatihs wins Latvia’s first medal of 2008 Olympics

Weightlifter Viktors Ščerbatihs has won Latvia’s first medal—a bronze—in the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games with his Aug. 19 performance in the +105 kilogram event.

The 33-year-old athlete from Dobele, who also is a member of the Saeima, was considered in media reports as the frontrunner for gold in the heaviest men’s weightlifting class. But it was Germany’s Matthias Steiner who stole the show, lifting a total 461 kilograms in the snatch and clean-and-jerk portions of the event, according to the official Web site of the Beijing Games.

Ščerbatihs, who won a silver medal 2004 Games in Athens, lifted a total of 448 kilograms for the bronze. Evgeny Chigishev of Russia took the silver medal with a total of lift of 460 kilograms. The event took place in the Beijing University of Aeronautics & Astronautics Gymnasium.

Estonia so far has won one silver medal, won by Tõnu Endrekson and Jüri Jaanson in the men’s double sculls rowing competition. Lithuania has two medals. Mindaugas Mizgaitis won bronze in the men’s 120 kilogram Greco-Roman wrestling event, while Gintarė Volungevičiūtė took the silver in the laser radial sailing event.

Andris Straumanis is a special correspondent for and a co-founder of Latvians Online. From 2000–2012 he was editor of the website.

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