Youngsters improve in Games


Team Papua New Guinea’s table tennis player Tammi Agari narrowly missed out on a win in her second match against Fiji’s Touea Titana in the women’s singles of the Birmingham Commonwealth Games at the National Exhibition Centre on Wednesday.
The sixteen-year-old, from Tubusereia village, Central, managed to shake off the nerves after losing her first match to push Titana to the seventh game, only to be edged 4-3 (18-16, 10-12, 9-11, 12-10, 11-4, 6-11, 11-9).
In the men’s singles, Geoffrey Loi put up spirited performances in his 0-4 losses to Barbados’ Tyrese Knight and Malaysia’s Qi Shen Wong.
Among the Team PNG supporters in the crowd was chef de mission Michael Henao who commended the pair on their improved performances.
“We are proud of your efforts thus far,” he said.
“You are young and have a long way to go, and will only get better.
“Learn, reset and do your best in the doubles.”
Loi and Agari are students at the Butuka Academy in Port Moresby, and do long commuting every day from Tubusereia to school, then after to training and then back home to the village. “A lot of sacrifices have been made by our athletes and officials to prepare for this competition and we encourage support from fellow Papua New Guineans back home and around the world,” Henao said.
“Unless we have walked, run and played in their shoes, we won’t truly appreciate their hard work and sacrifices – the sweat, the tears and the hardship that came with it.”
In other results on day six, Team PNG’s squash mixed doubles pairing of Amity Alarcos and Feanor Siaguru lost 0-2 to Australia’s Donna Lobban and Cameron Pilley.
On the track and field, Team PNG’s Edna Boafob recorded a personal best in the women’s heptathlon with a total of 4,068 points to finish eighth overall.
Emmanuel Wanga finished seventh with a time of 48.23 seconds in his heat of the men’s 400m.
National Exhibition Centre-based Team PNG athletes and officials were honoured to meet the Earl of Wessex, Prince Edward, on Wednesday.
Weightlifter Morea Baru had the pleasure of showing Prince Edward his silver medal he bagged earlier this week.

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