Cook Islands

Hunt names first Cook Islands squad

Karmichael Hunt named his first Cook Islands squad, having taken over from Tony Iro as head coach.

The Cook Islands are the last team to name their squad for the Pacific Championships tournament, which features six teams split into two divisions. Australia, Samoa and New Zealand play in one division, while the  Cook Islands battle PNG and  Fiji in the other.

The Cooks who play both of their games in Port Moresby will see NRL experience from the likes of Parramatta Eels' prop Makahesi Makatoa and Esan Marsters as well as South Sydney Rabbitohs prop Davvy Moale.

Olam to miss opening match

The Kumuls come in fresh off an impressive Prime Minister’s 13 showing, which involved most of their squad, the Kumuls take on the Cook Islands in their first home Test match in four years.

The Pacific Championships opener is set for a big showdown on Sunday 15th October at the Santos National Football Stadium in Port Moresby.

Kumuls halfback Kyle Laybutt has been named captain to lead a strong PNG team.

Cook Islands role a special honour for Hunt

During a brief return to the NRL in 2021, Hunt was convinced by his then teammate Alex Glenn to head away to that year’s World Cup with the Cook Islands, a nation he qualified for through his mum Matera who hails from the island of Rarotonga.

But when the pandemic caused the tournament to be postponed, and Hunt stepped away from top-level footy at the end of that season, dreams of a final fling on the Test scene disappeared.

Cook Islands resort bans Russians

The Rarotongan Beach Resort and Lagoonarium, typically welcomes a few hundred Russian guests a year, but over the weekend this message appeared on its social media pages - 'With regret, Russians are banned from our hotels until every single Russian soldier has left Ukraine.'

The post has since been deleted but Tata Crocombe said he stands by his decision despite critics calling it 'discriminatory'.

However, Crocombe said the resort ban would eventually be softened to only apply to Russian citizens who support Vladimir Putin's war.

Cook Islands football will head to Qatar

The national team was scheduled to play Tonga in the qualifiers match for a place in the group stage of the competition.

The Cook Islands will now get a chance to play against Fiji, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Tahiti and Vanuatu.


Cook Islands main island battered by storm

Yesterday strong gusts and heavy rain battered Rarotonga, with sea surges flooding low lying areas and inundating roads with debris.

Cook Islands Meteorological Service Director Arona Ngari said it will be a significant clean up operation.

"It has been a long week or so for us, but things have abated, so just waiting for another two three days for the whole momentum of the system to calm down. No major damage apart from coastal inundation, mostly from the waves. A bit of flooding last night and the day before from the rainfall," he said.

Cook Islands closes border over re-emergence of Covid-19 in NZ

The Office of the Prime Minister said this came after concern over the re-emergence of Covid-19 in the Auckland community.

A review of the order is expected on 17 August, ahead of the next flight from Auckland to Rarotonga, scheduled to arrive in Rarotonga on 21 August.

The Cook Islands News reported the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Immigration saying preventing Covid-19 from entering the county was a top priority for the government, and this was the appropriate response "while the source and extent of spread in New Zealand is being determined".

Stricter measures introduced in Guam, Cook Islands

Countries around the Pacific are continuing to further isolate themselves in a bid to stave off a rise in the number of Covid-19 cases in the region.

Six cases of the coronavirus have been confirmed in the Pacific - three in Guam and three in French Polynesia - since Thursday. No new cases were declared on Monday.

After three residents were confirmed to have Covid-19 on Sunday, Guam's government restricted public gatherings and closed all public schools on Monday. It also closed government offices for two weeks.

Cook Islands to face Tonga for netball gold

Cook Islands booked a place in the final by defeating Papua New Guinea 58-31 at the Multisport Centre, Faleata, urged on by their boisterous fans.

“This is great for Cook Island netball. Last time we were in a gold medal match was 1991. We have a huge support base, both here and at home,” said coach Suzanne Evans.

Both teams entered the game undefeated from pool matches. Cook Islands took the lead and kept PNG goaled for the first four minutes.

Cook Islands’ Alex Beddoes finishes favourite in middle distance events

Beddoes finished first in the 1500 metres with a time of 4 minutes 3.31 seconds.

He also won the 800 metres title yesterday.

Papua New Guinea’s Messach Fred came in second clocking a time of 4 minutes 6.90 seconds while Fiji’s Petero Veitaqomaki finished in third with a time of 4 minutes 7.10 seconds.