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Highs And Lows Of The Mini Games

Highs And Lows Of The Mini Games
From left: Weightlifting sensation Eileen Cikamatana and Team Fiji general manager Chris Yee in the Games Village in Port Vila, Vanuatu on December 18,2017. Photo: Peni Komaisavai
December 30
11:00 2017

Despite high expectations Team Fiji have finished third in the 2017 Pacific Mini Games. There had been some outstanding performances by some of our athletes and at same time there were disappointments as well.

There were high expectations on our men’s rugby sevens team coached by Saiasi Fuli but again they had to settle for silver after they were beaten to the gold medal by Samoa.

But no one realised the fire-power of our weightlifting team led by Manueli Tulo, Apolonia Vaivai and rising star Eileen Cikamatana as they won a total of 23 medals.

New Caledonia in regaining the region’s top spot focused on the minor sports and their dominance in Karate saw them scoop 14 gold medals out of the 16 at stake.

This gave them the edge to beat Papua New Guinea and Fiji convincingly in the medal count.

Overall, the Games has been a learning experience for Team Fiji with chef de mission Wayne O’Connor highlighting the need to focus on the minor sports.

So let’s take a look at some of the highs and lows of the Games;

 

THE HIGHS

n Team Fiji weightlifters winning 9 gold medals out of the 23 medals

n Para Table Tennis team led by Mary Rodan winning 4 gold medals and 1 silver.

n Miriama Senokonoko’s comeback to athletics after 4 years of inactivity. She won 3 gold medals in the women’s 400m, 4x400m and 4x100m relays. Later, she scooped a silver medal in the long jump.

n Conway Beg winning tennis first ever medal in the Pacific Mini Games. He came home with a silver.

n Team Fiji’s new-look men’s 4x100m relay team that beat Games’ favorites Papua New Guinea to win the gold medal.

n Team Fiji women’s football team that won a silver medal after taking favourites Vanuatu to the wire in the final. Vanuatu had spent 5 months training in China but our girls held them  during most part of the match before bowing out 2-1

n Beach Volleyball men and women’s teams qualifying for next year’s Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia.

 

THE LOWS

n Unexpected loss of our men’s 7s team 14-7 to Samoa in the final. The side failed to utilise all scoring opportunities that came their way and discipline was again their downfall.

n Team Fiji boxing side came in with a lot of fire but fizzled out as the going got tough.

n Our men’s football side who could have easily won the gold medal if it was not for those blunders in the clash against Solomon Islands, Tonga and Vanuatu.

 

Edited by Leone

Cabenatabua

Feedback:  peni.komaisavai@fijisun.com.fj

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