Australia Weightlifting Federation reportedly protests NZ's transgender weightlifter Laurel Hubbard's Commonwealth Games selection

Australia's Weightlifting Federation CEO Michael Keelan is reportedly calling for transgender Kiwi Laurel Hubbard to be banned from competing at the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast later this year.

Hubbard, 39, became the first transgender athlete picked to represent New Zealand at the Commonwealth Games, having met the criteria to be selected as a woman.

Hubbard will become the first transgender New Zealander to compete at next year's Gold Coast games. Source: 1 NEWS

However, the Daily Telegraph have reported Australia are protesting the selection, with Keelan writing to Commonwealth Games officials, saying that male weightlifter's hold an advantage over female competitors - even after transitioning.

"Ultimately, it is our strong view that weightlifting has always been a gender-specific sport, male and female, not a competition among individuals of various levels of testosterone," Keelan wrote.

Laurel Hubbard has been backed by NZ lifting great Tony Ebert.
Source: 1 NEWS

"In our respectful view, the current criteria and its application has the potential to devalue women's weightlifting and discourage female-born athletes from pursuing the sport at the elite level in the future.

"The International Weightlifting Federation should clarify why the current criteria are considered appropriate, adequate and fair, otherwise an alternative to the status quo should urgently be considered." 

Hubbard won a silver medal in the 90kg plus division at the world championships last year, as well as an international gold medal at an event in Melbourne.

1 NEWS understands that this is the third time Keelan is believed to have raised objection to Hubbard's participation - including before last year's World Championships in Anaheim.

New Zealand Weightlifting told 1 NEWS as long as Hubbard meets the selection criteria, then she will compete as a woman.

The Kiwi made history claiming two silver medals in her first event at this year's world championships in Anaheim. Source: 1 NEWS