By MELTON PAIS
VETERAN Chimbu bodybuilder Steve Bomal won the overall title at the national bodybuilding championships in Port Moresby on Saturday.
The 59-year-old, who is also president of the national federation, came in with good conditioning and his trademark arms to add another Mr PNG title to his trophy cabinet in front of a lively crowd at the Cosmopolitan Club, Vision City.
Defending champion Lucas Wemin from Chuave, Chimbu, was unable to contest for the major prize after he was beaten by the impressive Nathan Keovi in the 75kg division.
The national championships, the 27th edition of the event, saw competitors from five centres take part in the one-day competition.
Bomal qualified to compete for the overall title after winning his masters division.
Team Chimbu athletes won three gold medals in their respective divisions and their Governor Michael Dua made a commitment to hosting next year’s national titles in Kundiawa.
PNG bodybuilding Federation marketing manager Yonkond Goiya said Bomal was looking forward to representing the country at the Mr South Pacific titles in Fiji later this year.
“Steve (Bomal) will lead our national team to the South Pacific Bodybuilding championships in October in Fiji,” Goiya said.
Goiya said six provinces Jiwaka, Chimbu, New Ireland, Morobe, Eastern Highlands and host province National Capital District out of the 11 registered associations in the country.
“The other provinces could not make due to the cost but we’re hoping they can all make it to Chimbu next year,” he said.
“Steve is a great veteran bodybuilder and he’s won the title before and did a really good job here especially for a man his age.
“He had good size and had some really good body parts and good conditioning. He had enough to impress the judges.”
The men’s categories included the 60kg, 65kg, 70kg, 75kg, 80kg, 85kg, and 90kg.
Team Jiwaka won gold in men’s 60kg, 65kg and 90kg.
Last year’s runner-up, Canny Cooper representing NCD won gold in men’s 70kg while his daughter Jacky Cooper won gold in women’s 65kg division.
Eastern Highlander Keovi pulled off upset of the day winning the 75kg division over defending champ Lucas Wemin.
Goiya said Bomal was an inspiration to other young bodybuilders and would lead the national side to South Pacific titles with a group of young competitors as the sport looked to identify and help develop the next generation of promising athletes.
“Steve’s immediate goal now is to win South Pacific title and he is preparing to do that.
“He has won it before so it is a something he has hoping to do again and then he and the team will look to a major contest in Thailand in December,” Goiya said.
By MELTON PAIS