By HENRY MORABANG
PAPUA New Guinea’s elite runners were pushed to the line by unknowns from the provinces yesterday as athletics entered day two of competition at Sir John Guise Stadium for the 4th PNG Games in Port Moresby.
NCD’s Nadia Bais shrugged off a great challenge from Madang’s Lilian Turalir in their 100m heat.
Bais won the race in a time of 13.38s while Turalir came in second in a time of 13.23s to qualify for the semi-finals.
PNG Olympic and Commonwealth Games sprinter Mae Koime faced a challenge in Heat 3 with Selina Bane (Western) and Aida Avenue trailing up her heels.
She finished in a good time of 12.61s while Toea Wisil was lucky to win ahead of Melanie Waru of East Sepik in Heat 4 in a time of 13.46s.
In the men’s 100m heat, Seth Paparavat of East New Britain ran the fastest time of 10.96s while Miria Igo ran an exceptional 11.01 seconds in his heat.
Kupun Wisil, the younger brother of elite female sprinter Toea, clocked an impressive 11.23s in the 100m to gain a semi-final berth for Morobe today. PNG Athletic Union president Tony Green, who was at the stadium last night, said there were certainly a lot of surprises emerging at the track events.
Green was surprised to learn that Sapolai Yao finished fourth in his speciality event the 1,500m while he could not muster enough stamina for the 10,000m which was won by Bougainville ahead of Simbu.
In the middle distance races, Green predicted that Dephanie Aito of Madang would win the 3,000m and 1,500m races.
In the 3,000m result made available by PNGAU, the 15-year old Miak Primary School student from Karkar Island in Madang clocked 11:18.49 in her heat while Maria Kuaduma from Simbu and her main rival, finished first in a time of 11:20.88.
Green said it would be an interesting match up to watch when they run in the finals.
The semi finals of 100m, 400m and 800m will start today staring at 10am.