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PNG Reps Gear Up

The Papua New Guinea Karate-do Federation (PNGKF) will treat their performance in the 16th Oceania Karate Championships as a trial for their athletes. PNGKF mentor coach Sensei Trevor Roberts said
13 Sep 2014 13:22
PNG Reps Gear Up
Various teams from Fiji and Australia assemble for the openning ceremony of the Fiji Cup at the Churchill Park in Lautoka on December 2,2019.. Photo: Salote Qalibau

The Papua New Guinea Karate-do Federation (PNGKF) will treat their performance in the 16th Oceania Karate Championships as a trial for their athletes.

PNGKF mentor coach Sensei Trevor Roberts said with their upcoming major competitions he will base his final 20 depending on their performance at the Vodafone Arena in Suva.

“We have brought our A and B side just to give them a run and see how they feel competing in their first major competition,” Sensei Roberts said.

“There are about 32 in the team and this is a trial which gives me an idea of who to perform under pressure and how they work and how they respond and from that I will then cut the squad down to 20 or 15. The sole objective of us being here is to win medals but to also settle down into good competition and develop and prepare ourselves for our major tournaments in Australia.”

Their next hurdle to overcome will be the Pacific Games, World Titles, Australian Open and Queensland Open in July next year.

PNGKF is the first Melanesian country to affiliate to the Oceania Karate Federation in 1995 and have competed twice since but they have come a long way and Sensei Roberts said they have improved over the years as he has coached the side for over a year now.

“We have improved a lot from the past years we have participated, when I started coaching PNG they weren’t quite good at the time but now they have started understanding the rules and regulations and in the future they will be a formidable team to look out for,” said Sensei Roberts.

He said their main opponents are the Fijians who they are keeping a close eye on as they are hoping to win medals.

“At the moment the Fiji guys are the ones we really want to try and beat in the Pacific Games, we are keeping a tight eye on them as well.

“This is pretty new for the guys and we are hoping for the calm before the storm which will be tomorrow (today) and we are looking for a gold medal in the team.” he said.

As for the host nation, Fiji took part in the 15th Oceania Karate Championships in 2012 held in Sydney, Australia where the female team took out gold in the Kata and junior Kata category.

Oceania Karate Federation president, World Karate Federation (WKF) vice-president and Karate Fiji president Makarita Lenoa said this year Team Fiji is hoping to better their performance but also that the championships will be a way to develop their upcoming youngsters.

“The team is ready to perform much better this year especially competing at home and another important thing to remember about the sport of Karate is that it takes years to develop,” Lenoa said.

The 2014 Oceania Karate Championships will begins today at the Vodafone Arena in Suva.

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