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Lifters take centre stage - for now
Crystal Ja
05:41 AEST Mon Aug 13 2012

Albeit nowhere near winning medals, Australia's two weightlifters both delivered on the weights they set out to clear in London.

But that's the extent of the good news story for the fringe sport ahead of what are set to be some troubled times.

Damon Kelly and Seen Lee return to Australia having finished 16th and seventh in their respective weight classes, satisfied by their efforts after rushed and injury-affected preparations.

But they'll also fly home to a gathering storm for the sport over the Daniel Koum scandal, which remains in murky legal waters and the subject of an independent inquiry.

"I just want the truth to come out," Kelly said after his competition in the 105kg-plus division.

Tthat was all he would say on the matter - a silence shared by most in the Australian weightlifting hierarchy.

By Kelly's own admission, it's the biggest - and worst - issue to hit the sport in its Australian history.

Koum is accused of extorting $5000 from Australian Weightlifting Federation boss Michael Keelan and other officials to lift at an Olympic qualifier.

Keelan went public saying he'd helped pay - and the performance ultimately won Australia a quota spot at London, one which Kelly later filled.

Melbourne-based Koum strongly denies the claims.

Shortly afterwards, Keelan, Australia's team coach, had his ticket to London cancelled by the AOC who denied it had anything to do with the saga.

But in London, the fuss escalated when Keelan - who still planned to help his mate Kelly out in an unofficial capacity - was barred from attending the competition by the AOC.

Kelly's personal coach Miles Wydall urged for the inquiries to run their course.

"Everybody who's involved in weightlifting in Australia is passionate about the sport and wants it to improve," he told AAP.

"I'm pumped up for the sport.

"I just hope we move on from it and move on to more important things."

The AOC are expected to address the Koum issue after the independent investigation is complete.

Kelly, 28, is meanwhile targeting an epic third Olympics in Rio if his body holds up, while mining engineer Lee will eye the 2014 Commonwealth Games first before considering her future.

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