Pacific Games 2015

Nigel Bana wins first gold in karate for PNG

The 23 year old defeated Sandip Pala of Fiji to take out the title in the men individual kumite -60kg event.

Bana was too strong for the Fijian, going for the upper kick during the three minutes battle to take him down 8-0.

Stephen Manaruru of Vanuatu and Emmanuel Faure of New Caledonia each got bronze.

Bana was humbled by the win and said a lot of sacrifices had paid off. He had to leave school studying science at the University of PNG this year to undergoing training for this event.

PNG on course for medals haul

Our 400m runners showed their class in winning the heats that were run this morning, recording the three fastest times out of the 17 runners who took to the blocks at the BSP Stadium.

The men’s final will run under the lights at 8:20pm tomorrow. Theo Piniau ran the fastest time,  stopping the clock at 48.71 seconds in the first heat setting the pace for his countrymen.

In the second heat, Kaminiel Matlaun ran a time of 49.71 seconds and Nelson Stone clocked 48.79 seconds in the final heat.

400m champ Stone raring to go

And the women’s 400m preliminary heats will take place at 10:50am.  

The Central Province man will be lining up in the 400m heat at 11:40am and is aiming to book a qualifying place in the next round.      

Stone is the Papua New Guinea national record holder in the 400m event and has dominated the event in the last 5 years in the Pacific Region, but in the XV Pacific Games he has to beat his own country men who have run good times this season.  

Kaminiel Matlaun, Veherney Babob, Martin Orovo and George Yamak will also be lining up in the heats.

Gold medalist Yao limping

The veteran Papua New Guinea distance runner appeared to have injured himself as he won the first XV Pacific Games track and field gold medal at the BSP Stadium tonight.

Turning the final 100m bend, Yao had the gold medal in sight and only had a last obstacle.

With the passionate crowd roaring in unison, PNG, PNG, Yao stumbled when jumping over the cross bar, hitting his foot.

Yao has two more events on his orogram and the foot injury could affect his chances.

Yao was seen hopping around after the medal presentation.

Sapolai Yao wins first gold for PNG in athletics

More than 15, 000 fans cheered him on as Yao took his lead into the second lap and maintained it to the end.

Yao finished in a time of 9:38.89s. Winning silver was another Papua New Guinean in Skene Kiage who clocked 9:47.80s followed by the bronze winner from Fiji in Ashneel Abhinay Nand. Nand completed the race in 9:57.08s.

Vanuatu cruise past hockey new chums Tonga

Despite a spirited display by Tonga, who have not participated in Pacific Games hockey before, Vanuatu ran out comfortable 21-1 winners in the men’s match.

Vanuatu captain Hiro Namu gave credit to his opponents despite the one-sided nature of the contest.

“The Tongans played tough, but I was pleased with our performance – the boys played well,” Namu said.

“The Tongans were not a challenge because this is their first time to play hockey in the Pacific Games. They were not strong but it was good experience and I praise their good sportsmanship.

Plucky Solomon Islands nailed 68-25 by PNG

Before the match started the venue attendants had to find vacant seats to seat ticket holders who were still outside the playing venue.

The match was played in front of a packed arena and PNG did not disappoint the home fans, sprinting to an early lead 20-4 by the end of the first quarter.

PNG goal shooter Taita Baldwin used her height and size effectively as she led the scoring onslaught moving the host nation to 40-10 at half time.

The half time siren was a sound of help for the Solomon Islanders, giving time to regroup for the second part of the match.

Vanuatu survive big push by Tonga

Vanuatu won 2-1 (21-19, 20-22, 15-13) in three closely contested sets at BSP Stadium.

“We feel great winning this match but credit to our opponents who played very well,” said Vanuatu captain Isaac Mael.

In other men’s matches, Papua New Guinea defeated Northern Marianas 2-0 and Fiji beat Tuvalu 2-0.

In the women’s matches, New Caledonia defeated Fiji 2-0, Vanuatu beat Guam 2-0 and Tahiti overcame Tuvalu 2-0.

PNG women through to gold play off

PNG won the game in the first half, scoring all three of their goals through Georgina Kaikas, Ramona Padio and Meagen Gunemba.

Gunemba, after three games, has scored five goals.

PNG will meet New Caledonia for gold this Thursday. New Caledonia was too strong, beating Cook Islands 5-1 in the first semi-final earlier today.

This means Cook Islands play Samoa in the bronze play off.

Beach volleyball stretched for seats

The code is being played at the BSP Stadium outer field.

Beach  volleyball does  not have a huge following in the country, but it certainly has spectators hooked up to watch.

From our estimate the seating capacity is less than 100.