2023 Pacific Games | SPORTS

‘Overcome Obstacles Through Unity’

"This Pacific Games marks the dedication, determination and challenging journey; we've overcome the obstacles," he said.
21 Nov 2023 12:18
‘Overcome Obstacles Through Unity’
A dance group from the Solomon Islands graced the crowd at the Pacific Games opening ceremony. Photo: Sereana Sala lo

Fireworks lit up the skies of Honiara as they celebrated the opening of the Sol2023 Pacific Games on Sunday night with a sell-out crowd of 20,000 spectators.

It was a historic occasion with Solomon Islands hosting the Pacific Games for the first time.

It was a display of culture, sports, unity and celebration which left the audience at the Solomon Islands National Stadium in admiration and excitement as the biggest sporting event in the Pacific was declared opened by Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare.

He acknowledged the support from partnership countries in making their dream of hosting the Pacific Games a reality.

These countries were the People’s Republic of China, Saudi Arabia, Australia, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, India and the United States of America.

The Tongans also provided some live entertainment at the opening

Sogavare said the Games theme of ‘Challenge, Celebrate, Unite’ has gathered together island nations from around the Pacific, who are united to celebrate and enjoy not only the spirit of the competition but also the extraordinary diversity of culture, that defines the biggest ocean in the world.

“This Pacific Games marks the dedication, determination and challenging journey; we’ve overcome the obstacles,” he said.

“We have thrived in the spirit of unity and friendship and this is an opportunity to build bridges among nations.

“My heartfelt admiration to you athletes; you have overcome the obstacles.”

Former Solomon Islands sprint king, Jim Marau, opened the Games.

He was the first Solomon Islander to win a gold medal in an international event. He won the men’s lO0metres sprint event at the 1975 South Pacific Games in Guam.

Streets outside the national stadium were also crowded with people who could not get tickets for the opening ceremony.

Fireworks at the opening was a spectacle. Photos: Sereana Salalo

Feedback: sereana.salalo@fijisun.com.fj

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