The National, Thursday February 27th, 2014
ATHLETICS Papua New Guinea’s training squad for field events at the 2015 Pacific Games in Port Moresby is looking much stronger now following the recently concluded Talent Identification Programme in jumps and throws.
According to Athletics PNG president Tony Green, pictured, the outstanding candidates for making the throws team next year are Debono Paraka, Camilus Gigmai and Peter Bray in discus; Albert Karo Jnr, John Tombele and Camilus Gigmai for shot put; and for the javelin, Jack Sakias and Nile Jingharn (both Jiwaka) and Noel Arasea (Buin).
In the women’s events however numbers were smaller with the best being Barbara Nicholas (shot and discus) and Rose Tene (discus) both from Simbu; and from Port Moresby Lily Poroli (discus and shot).
The talent search unearthed lots of potential men’s triple jumpers with the outstanding candidates being Patrick Hou (Lae); Penniel Joshua (Namatanai); Karo Iga (NCD) and Karroll Matambui (NCD).
In the high jump Iga , Penniel Richard, Cornelius Pasker and Otto Peter all demonstrated great potential to improve.
Nazmie Lee Marai, a current national squad sprinter showed the potential to be a good long jumper as did Hou, Iga and Richard.
In the women’s jumps no outstanding new talent was discovered but there was encouraging news for Athletics PNG in the feedback it received from coach Philip Newton about the athletes it already has.
Newton was impressed with Annie Topal, Naomi Kerari, Nicole Lee and Nellie Leslie and offered good advice to Joyce Bigiglin and Irianny Haay regarding their training and which events they are best suited for.
With Rellie Kaputin making waves in the USA, Helen Philemon maintaining her form, and Betty Burua being the current Pacific Games triple jump champion, PNG should be able to field a strong women’s jumps squad next year.
The programme also unearthed some good all round athletes who can be trained for the decathlon including Peter Bray, Cletus Mosi (Lae), David Stegman (Hagen) and Cairo Peruka (NCD).
With Robson Yinambe already in the APNG training programme having been identified at the 2012 PNG Games and 2011 Pacific Games representative Reginald Monagi a possible contender, PNG certainly has the athletes.
“The difficulty for us here is the limited time available,” Green said.
“We only have 18 months left to the Games and for the 10-event decathlon athletes would have to do some training overseas.”
“Overall we’re quite pleased with the outcome of the programme as it has given us quite a few male athletes to work on,” Green added.
“We would have liked to have found more female throwers, but with Jane Pulu and Sharon Toako already in our training programme the addition of three women does give us some hope of being well represented in the throws next year.”
Green thanked all the athletes who took part in the programme and said that Athletics PNG would contact those selected for additional training support.