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Powerlifter world champion again

PUBLISHED: 15:32 04 December 2008 | UPDATED: 12:27 03 July 2010

World champion for the 12th time, Matt Saunders in deadlift action.

World champion for the 12th time, Matt Saunders in deadlift action.

Great Yarmouth's Matt Saunders put himself through the pain barrier to win the World Powerlifting Championships for the 12th year running.

Saunders had suffered major shoulder problems all year and decided to lift only 10 days before the competition.

Great Yarmouth's Matt Saunders put himself through the pain barrier to win the World Powerlifting Championships for the 12th year running.

Saunders had suffered major shoulder problems all year and decided to lift only 10 days before the competition.

The injury meant that the RAF chief technician only managed to complete a single squat, bench press and deadlift which gave a total lift 805Kg - well below last year's 880kg world record.

To make matters worse Saunders tore a muscle under his armpit while attempting a deadlift at the competition in Indiana.

“I have mixed emotions because I never like to enter a competition unless I am 100 per cent fit,” said Saunders, who trains at the Top Body Gym in Gorleston.

“However, I was not prepared to relinguish my world crown without a fight, and thankfully I had enough in the tank to fight off my nearest rival who was 32.5KG behind me in the end.

“I hadn't done any shoulder or chest work all year due to the injury, and only managed six weeks of squat training before the competition so under the circumstances I can't be too disappointed.”

Saunders has been told to take a month off to let the injuries heal and was back at Headley Court the Armed Forces Sports Injury and Rehab Centre for another assessment on his shoulder this week.

After a glorious powerlifting career Saunders is considering whether to continue competing at the top level.

He said: “I will discuss my future with my training partner and coach Scott Graysmark and make a decision pending my shoulder consultation.

“I remain the most successful drug-free powerlifter ever and I am very proud of that achievement. And, given the opportunity I would love to build on it in the coming years.”

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