Pepes feature four debutants at Games


The PNG Pepes team taking part in the Pacific Mini Games will feature four debutants.
They are Boio Peter, Ravusiro Vali, Carol Kanapoti and Genevieve Ume.
The four are no strangers to representative duties, having played for the national Under-21 netball team and will get a taste of senior competition at the Mini Games in Port Vila, Vanuatu.
Netball PNG is overseeing a changing of the guard using the Mini Games to blood a new generation of players. President Julienne Leka-Maliaki said this group of young players with their talent and versatility would form the core of the Pepes team in years to come.
“We want to prepare them well so they can play together for the next 10 years so we can maintain our position at the regional and international level,” Leka-Maliaki said
The four debutants will be out to stamp their mark in the tournament paving the way for future representative duties and will certainly be in contention for spots in the senior team if they impress during the Mini Games.
With 2018 set to be a hectic year for Netball PNG, competition for places will be tough.
Oceania Netball Federation has announced that the regional World Cup qualifiers would be held in Auckland, New Zealand from April 18-22, 2018.
The top two countries from this tournament will represent the Oceania region at the World Cup in Liverpool, England in July 2019.
In preparations for the qualifiers, Netball PNG will be holding an open trials camp from Jan 6-7, 2018 in Port Moresby to select a strong 30-member training squad.
A call for this open trials is extended to current squad members and potential players residing in PNG and overseas.
The Pepes will play a couple of trials matches in Brisbane before departing for the Mini Games in Vanuatu.
Pepes Mini Games schedule fixtures: Wed, Dec 13 – 4pm PNG v Vanuatu, Thu, Dec 14 – 9am PNG v Solomon Islands, Fri, Dec 15 – 12pm PNG v Tonga