Topal to study in the USA

Pacific Games medallist in the women’s triple jump, Annie Topal has secured a scholarship to attend New Mexico Highlands University (NMHU) in the USA.

Topal was a surprise bronze medallist at the 2015 Games, producing an 11.99m national junior record jump to finish third behind Rellie Kaputin who won gold and Milika Tuivanuavou of Fiji who had just completed her four year US University program.

NMHU is in the city of Las Vegas and their athletes compete in Division 2 of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCCA) program.

 “Annie’s performance attracted the attention of a number of colleges, but there were a number of requirements she needed to fulfil including the SAT test and NCAA registration before any arrangements could be finalised,” said Athletics PNG Secretary, Philip Rehder.

Meanwhile, the East New Britain Provincial Government has also pledged to support talented athletes from the province to pursue a career in track and field while studying in the USA.

This follows a decision made last September endorsing a submission by Athletics PNG (APNG) Inc. for some assistance for its athletes studying overseas. 

A joint announcement about this program will shortly be made by APNG Inc and the Office of the Provincial Administrator.


Troy Taule