Tongan government committed to hosting 2019 Pacific Games

A statement from the PM’s Office said it also reflected the overall level of readiness of the Kingdom of Tonga as a whole, including the Sporting Federations and the Athletes, to host the Pacific Games 2019.

The Government said Tonga would like to reaffirm its commitment to host the Pacific Games 2019.

Accordingly, the Government will continue to strengthen and double the effort that has already been in operation, within the resources available.

Tonga’s PM says it’s better for Fiji or Samoa to host 2019 Pacific Games

He is adamant that Tonga cannot host the sports because Tonga’s Organizing Committee and sports bodies are not efficient in their managing of sports in Tonga because there are more losses than wins.

Mr Pohiva said, when competing in international events such as boxing, netball, rugby union and league and Tonga’s teams were all defeated.

He said, this was embarrassing results for Tonga where their pride were trodden under.

The Prime Minister said, many sports organizations in Tonga have borrowed money from Government and were not able to pay them back.

Tonga's PM plans to cut Games planning costs

‘Akilisi Pohiva said even though the Supreme Court has reinstated Lord Sevele as chair of the South Pacific Games Organising Committee his part in preparations for the Games would be minimal.

The Prime Minister told Kaniva News this was to reduce spending as much as possible so money could be spent on sport.

He said that in 2015 alone the government spent TP$1 million on the committee’s salaries and operational costs.

Mr Pohiva said foreign governments and donors sacrificed part of their people’s taxes so they could help fund Tonga’s preparation for the Games.

Tongan officials still waiting on PNG help for Teufaiva Stadium

RNZ reports PNG agreed to help after a party led by Tongan Prime Minister 'Akilisi Pohiva visited Port Moresby in January.

PNG Sports Minister Justin Tkatchenko then led a delegation to Nuku'alofa in February to assess the local facilities.

But CEO of the Games Organising Committee, Lord Sevele, said eight months on work is yet to begin and uncertainty remains.

"From what we have been told by Government officials they have not confirmed the funding, the amount, nor the timing of it," he said.

Pacific Games Council expects Tonga to remain as host

Prime Minister 'Akilisi Pohiva told parliament on Tuesday that he has doubts that Tonga will be ready in time to host the event.

He said the government had still not found land to build an 18-hole golf course for the Games and the scheduled upgrade of the Teufaiva Stadium was also in doubt.

But the President of the Pacific Games Council, Vidhya Lakhan, said they remain supportive of Tonga as host nation.

"As far as the Pacific Games Council is concerned, the 2019 Pacific Games will continue to be hosted by Tonga," he said.

Mixed netball squad go through tough training session

For this year’s championship in New Zealand, the only country missing is PNG but don’t fret, PNG wasn’t in a position to head to these championships, 2017 is where they will hit the world court and shine.

After conducting trials and selection in August, the squad is now into an eight weeks intensive training program as they prepare for the Queensland championships early next year.

The team is undergoing weekdays and weekends training seasons to improve their fitness level and skills to help them adapt to a higher level  of competition.

Samoa seal final qualifying berth for netball's World Youth Cup

Having lost their opening two matches of the tournament, Samoa won three straight to join Fiji and the Cook Islands as the top three teams in the Pacific.

Tongan Olympian criticises The Daily Beast article on gay hook-ups in Rio

ABC reports journalist Nico Hines wrote an article about using the gay dating app Grinder at the Rio Games, referencing the country and sport of many of those looking for sex using the app.

Tongan swimmer Amini Fonua, who is open about being gay, said The Daily Beast website ought to be ashamed of itself for potentially outing athletes from places like Tonga where homosexuality is illegal.

Hamstring injury forces Filimone out, supporters say he wins gold

Kaniva News reports his condition was unknown but photos uploaded to Facebook showed he was limping out of the field with the help of a supporter. He was also seen being pushed on a wheelchair.

His supporters, however, took to Facebook to congratulate and told Filimone he has won a gold medal for Tonga after he became second in the preliminary 100m in 10.76 seconds.

Meanwhile it has been reported that there were two Tongan referees at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

Lata Kaumatule, 31, and Tevita Makasini, 39, were both assistant referees in Olympic Soccer competition.

Tupenu a show of Tongan pride

RNZ reports the rules state that athletes are meant to shoot in shorts but the 18 year old said he wanted to do something different to showcase his heritage and the judges agreed to the request.

"It gives you a bit of a boost to know, to actually feel the tradition and the culture. The last couple of days I was thinking of it and I tried it on and I shot fine in it with the wind but it was mainly just to show how proud we are to be Tongan, the team in general...there's a line called "Tongan Pride" had to show some of my culture, some of what we actually have in Tonga."