Fri, 18 Aug 2000

KONI expels Supeni from Olympic weightlifting squad

JAKARTA (JP): The National Sports Council (KONI) finally expelled women's weightlifter Supeni from its Olympic Games squad but she will still be groomed for the 2001 Southeast Asian Games in Kuala Lumpur and 2002 Asian Games in Pusan, South Korea.

Olympic executive training director Arie Sudewo told reporters on Wednesday that he decided to pick three of the four lifters to the quadrennial event in Sydney next month.

The three lifters are Sri Indriyani and Lisa Rumbewas in the 48 kilograms division and Winarni in the 53kgs.

The decision was made on the basis of technical and non technical aspects including the personal achievement data of each athlete as recorded by the Indonesian Weightlifting, Powerlifting and Bodybuilding Association (PABBSI) and the Olympic executive training director.

"The decision was taken objectively and not on the basis of like and dislike," said Arie, who is also KONI vice chairman, as quoted by Antara.

On Tuesday, Olympic training deputy Imron ZS had said that Indonesia had a greater chance of winning a medal in the 48kgs division due to the absence of Chinese lifters.

Supeni's expulsion has been predicted since last week when the new PABBSI chairman Dharma Surya unilaterally named Lisa instead as a member of the squad prior to the final evaluations undertaken on Aug. 9 in Pringsewu, Lampung, and on Aug. 14 in Jakarta.

The letter upset weightlifting training director Djoko Pramono who said he knew nothing about the decision. He was also very angry that as the party fully responsible for Olympics training, he was not told about the plan to expel Supeni, who competes in the 53kgs division.

Indonesia earned three Olympics berths at the World Championships in Athens last year.

Sri and Winarni finished second in their respective classes while Supeni was fourth while newcomer Lisa came in eighth.

Djoko and Supeni's coach Sori Enda Nasution had said lifters would need tough mental readiness to compete in a huge event such as the Olympics.

The Indonesian contingent -- comprising of 48 athletes, 23 coaches and 19 officials -- will be officially announced on Aug. 22. (yan)