Erik Pettersson from Sweden was next at 180 kg He just got down and tried to lift the bar without any preparation and he failed on two occasions to even get the bar over his head he didn’t even complete the first part of the discipline. On his third and final attempt he over rotated and the bar went behind him. He was out. Naim Sulemanoglu from Turkey 180.5 made the same mistake and punched the wall in anger at himself for not coming in at 180 kg. Paul Anderson also from the USA played it safe coming in at 180 kg but because of the heavier body weight would have to step up on his next lift. Waldermar Bazonowski from Poland was up next at 180.5 kg after two failed attempts it was unlikely that he would qualify but he got the bar up but was all over the stage before finally dropping the bar. The rules state that you must hold a stationary position for five seconds. Again a protest went in from the polish team this time but they stood by their decision and Waldermar was out.
Next came the biggest threat of the competition Vasily Alekeyev from Russia he was the reining world and Olympic Champion but he was over a stone heavier than Joe so his total would have to be compared to his on body weight. He qualified at 180.5 kg
Gary Langford noticed something that Joe hadn’t. Vasily was turning his left foot slightly to the left which made his knees turn inwards. This would put extra strain on his knee joints when trying to lift heavier weight.
The seven qualifiers would now battle it out for the gold medal.
Earnest Cadine (France) was up first in the second round of the competition. He tried to lift 18.5 kg and failed. He could still do the clean and jerk but he would need a massive total to beat Joe.
Paul Anderson (USA) lifted 180.5 to a huge round of applause from the crowd.
Joe was next and he went up to 200 kg everyone thought him crazy going up by that amount but Joe was brimming with confidence now having lifted 180.5 kg he walked up to the bar then back to the plate to power his hands then his shook out his neck and arm muscles he walked to the bar then placed his feet as he had practiced thousands of times he ran his hand across the bar then took up his grip he took the weight then pushed it up the crowd were cheering as Joe just stood straight up. He held it easily then the buzzer went and he got three white lights.
Vasily Alekeyev (Russia) was up next and put 200.5 on the bar he completely fell back and rolled over on his first attempt then on the second he dropped the bar.
His third attempt was good and up it went.
Pyross Dimas (Greece) failed to lift 200 kg he was another who would need a massive total on the Clean and Jerk if he was to win a medal.
Yuri Vlasov (Russia) also failed to lift 200 kg on his third attempt.
Krastyu Semerdzhiev (Bulgaria) cleared 200 kg at the third time of asking but was heavier than Joe so at the moment Vasily Alekeyev was leading.