The National, Wednesday 29th May 2013
By ZACHERY PER
THE Nagepu family in Goroka, Eastern Highlands, have a knack for athletics, as one of their own demonstrated during the Highlands Regional Athletics championships in Goroka over the weekend.
Thirteen-year old Ayana Nagepu (pictured) could not hold back her desire to trace the path of her cousins who represented PNG in various field and track events including her grand father Edward Ayamiseba, who was one of the first volleyball players to represent PNG at the Guam and Fiji South Pacific Games.
Young Ayana did the family proud to come second in 100m sprints in the Open Women’s division.
She continued last Sunday to came second in the 200m in the same division.
Her father Nagepu Yalu after learning of his daughter’s interest in athletics he was not keen on her running on a track but to concentrate on her studies.
Ayana is currently doing grade 9 at Goroka Secondary School.
He said despite his concerns he allowed Ayana to participate in the games.
Ayana never had any formal training or coaching before but still managed to do well in the senior category and this shows the talent she possesses.
Yalu said his daughter is following the footsteps of her cousins – Helen Philemon, and Reginald and Adrienne Monagi – making an impact on the track.
PNG national representative Reginald (hurdler) is currently on scholarship in America and his sister Adrienne is also a national representative.
Ayana won gold in last year’s highlands championship but Yalu preferred his daughter stay in the classroom.
He said now the athletics bug had gotother memberss of his family in younger sister Mia and cousin Irianny Ayamiseba.
“They are aspiring athletes following the footsteps of their cousins Helen, Reginald and Adrienne and their grandfather,” he said.
Yalu said said he would now back Ayana since she obviously had a lot of natural talent.