PNG drop to fourth at Games


NEW Caledonia have taken over the lead from Papua New Guinea in the 2017 Pacific Mini Games in Port Vila, Vanuatu, with 24 gold, 10 silver and six bronze medals.
Le Cagous picked up 18 gold medals over the weekend to push them to the top of the medal tally.
They won seven gold in karate, 10 in judo and one in the women’s team event in tennis after edging out the Solomon Islands 2-1.
They are closely followed by Fiji on 15 gold, 10 silver and 13 bronze medals while Samoa have jumped into third spot with 14 gold, nine silver and five bronze.
Pace setter, PNG is on 14 goals, seven silver and four bronze and host Vanuatu are on eight gold, 11 silver and seven bronze.
PNG started the Mini Games on high note after winning 14 gold medals in weightlifting.
New Caledonia surged past PNG after picking the majority of their gold from karate and judo while host, Vanuatu was the biggest mover from “nowhere” to fifth spot behind the early leaders.
With athletics, beach volleyball, boxing and netball commencing today, the lead on the medal tally is likely to change where Fiji and PNG are likely to dominate the track and field events.
Sprint queen, Toea Wisil is likely to win the gold medal in 100m and 200m and anchor the 4x100m relay for Team PNG for a third gold.
Papua New Guinea should have no problems picking up gold in netball after Fiji and Samoa pulled out. They will likely face Tonga in the gold medal play-off.
With first week of competition gone, Team PNG is banking on team sports plus boxing to win more medals.
Attempts to contact chef de Mission Emma Waiwai last night were unsuccessful.