Athletics clears air over elite participation


ATHLETICS Papua New Guinea will allow elite and national squad members to compete or represent their provinces at the PNG Games in Kimbe, West New Britain.
APNG president Tony Green made the comments when outlining the athletics schedule for the BSP-sponsored Games.
He clarified the APNG policy regarding the definition of elite athletes and the extent to which they may participate at the Games.
“Our (elites) focus is on the future, especially next year and the Commonwealth Games in 2018.
“We want to ensure that national squad athletes have sufficient competition opportunities, whether overseas or in PNG,” Green said.
He said the PNG Games was important to the majority of national squad athletes, who did not get enough competition opportunities.
Green said the restrictions would only be put on those athletes who had the benefit of sufficient opportunities internationally. These elite athletes are Olympians Toea Wisil and Theo Piniau and other overseas-based presentatives Rellie Kaputin, Donna Koniel, Peniel Richard and Adrine Monagi.
“Elite athletes may participate at the Games but not in their specialist events,” Green said.

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