“The most important person in sport is the athlete, they are not just competing in their respective sports but they are also ambassadors of PNG when they participate in the respective Games, said PNG Olympic Committee (PNGOC) President Sir John Dawanincura during the Team PNG Bonding event on Sunday 15th May 2022, at the Gateway Hotel, Port Moresby.
Addressing all Team Officials, he added that if we fail as administrators, the athletes will suffer.
The combined Team PNG event was attended by 70 athletes and officials going to the Northern Marianas Pacific Mini Games in June and those going to the Birmingham Commonwealth Games in July. Athletes and officials who were out of Port Moresby also participated online on Zoom.
Sir John encouraged the athletes and officials to use the opportunity given to them to ask questions about any Games information before going to the Games and urged all athletes selected for both Games to be the best they can be.
Both Chef de Missions (CdM) of the Games also addressed the teams during this event.
In his opening remarks to the team, Michael Henao, CdM for Team PNG to Birmingham said: “We are very proud to be flying the Kumul with you athletes at the Commonwealth Games come July”.
Mr Henao provided games updates including travel dates, accommodation venues and games venues.
“PNG will be represented in Athletics, Boxing, Squash, Swimming, Table Tennis and Weightlifting.”
“Of these sports, four (4) athletes have qualified under the Regional Qualification Process confirmed by the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF). They include Weightlifting’s Dika Toua and Morea Baru and Table Tennis’s Geoffrey Loi and Tammy Agari as announced in April,” said Mr Henao.
“The General Management Team and I are here to give you athletes the support, before, during and after the Games and we encourage your respective family, friends, communities and PNG as a whole to fly the Kumul with you,” concluded Henao.
CdM of Team PNG to the Pacific Mini Games Kila Dick, took the opportunity to congratulate the athletes for making it this far and being selected to attend the Games in the Northern Marianas Islands.
PNG will be represented in Athletics, Golf, Tennis, Va’a, Weightlifting and Para Sports at the Pacific Mini Games.
Organised by the PNGOC and the General Management Teams (GMT) to the Games, the Team PNG Bonding event had information booths for athletes and officials to access information, ask questions and also meet the GMT which includes the Medical Teams and Team Press Attaché’/Photographers to the Games.
In his closing statement, Sir John acknowledged Kumul Consolidated Holdings for its sponsorship towards Team PNG’s preparations for both Games and also the sponsors of the event Gateway Hotel for providing the venue for the event and Blue-7-Team for setting up the information booths. He said that despite the scourge of the pandemic the PNGOC was doing the best it can with whatever resources they had, and the support of our sponsors help make this event a success.”
The Mini Games will be held from the 17th to the 25th of June followed by the Commonwealth Games from the 28th of July to the 8th of August which will be held in Birmingham, England.