Liu Huanhua tries and fails with a clean and jerk of 223 kilograms at the Asian Weightlifting Championships ©Brian Oliver

It was supposed to be a case of "anything you can do, I can do better" on day seven of the Asian Weightlifting Championships here in Jinju, but it did not go quite to plan for Liu Huanhua.

The Chinese lifter won yet another title for his all-conquering team but, unlike his team-mates Li Dayin and Tian Tao the day before, he was not able to show world-record form.

It was a good day for the hosts, as Korean lifters finished second in both the day’s medal events, the men’s 96 kilograms and women’s 87kg.

Even if he had made either of his last two attempts Liu, 22, would not have gone into the record books because he was bumped up from 89kg to 96kg.

Liu had been entered at 89kg along with Li and Tian Tao - who was there making a video on his phone as Liu tried to outlift him - before China’s coaches cut three to two and put Liu in the heavier category.

He weighed in only 48 grams over the 89kg limit, giving most of his rivals a body weight advantage of more than six kilograms, and was clearly delighted to make 180kg in the snatch.

After successfully starting with 210kg in clean and jerk, where he is stronger, Liu jumped to 223kg, which was one kilogram more than Tian Tao made in setting a world record at 89kg yesterday.

He had two tries, had to work exceptionally hard to make the clean and failed with both.

The podium for the women's 87kg category in Jinju ©Brian Oliver
The podium for the women's 87kg category in Jinju ©Brian Oliver

Liu had already done enough to win, making 175-210-390, but was unable to show team-mate Tian Tao that he could do even better than a world record.

Sarat Sumpradit from Thailand, who equalled that 390kg total in the old 94kg category when he was fourth at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, might have taken second place but for two failures.

He finished third on 173-207-380 after Korea’s Won Jonbeong made up ground in the clean and jerk. 

Won took second place on 171-211-382.

In a low-key women’s 87kg session, only the winner Lo Ying-Yuan from Chinese Taipei made a total bigger than China’s top two way down in the 59kg category earlier this week.

Lo, oldest in the field at 26, made 110-131-241 ahead of the Korean Yun Ha Je on 99-132-231 and Rigina Adashbaeva from Uzbekistan on 103-127-230.

Turkmenistan’s Anamjan Rustamova claimed snatch bronze on 102kg and Aisha Omarova of Kazakhstan was third in clean and jerk.

China has no entries tomorrow but looks sure to add another title on Saturday (May 13) when Li Wenwen lifts in the women’s super-heavyweights.