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  • New Caledonia Leading the Way at Pacific Games


    (ATR) New Caledonia leads the medal table at the Samoa 2019 XVI Pacific Games, with almost 400 medals still up for grabs in the remaining days of the Games.

    Team Tahiti during the first night of swimming finals (Samoa 2019)
    Hosted in Apia, the Pacific Games features 11 disciplines with athletes from 24 countries competing from July 8 through July 20.

    Open water swimming was the first medal event for the games with New Caledonia winning one gold, two silver and one bronze.

    New Caledonia has won 118 medals so far, followed by Samoa with 80 and Tahiti with 75.

    In swimming alone, New Caledonia has secured 25 gold, 11 silver, and 13 bronze medals.

    On the first night of the swimming finals, Tichi Vakasama won Fiji’s first medal in men’s swimming since the 2011 Pacific Games.

    Tahiti’s Poerani Bertrand won gold in the women’s 200m breaststroke with Moana Wind bringing Fiji a second medal with silver.
    Samoa's Jill Walters winning gold in archery (Samoa 2019)

    Overall in the first night of the swimming finals, New Caledonia won 11 medals, four of which were gold. Tahiti won six medals including two gold.

    Following close behind, Fiji collected five medals with one gold along with Samoa winning four medals, half of which were gold. Lastly Papua New Guinea joined the podium with one bronze medal.

    Host nation Samoa received its first gold in archery through 18-year-old Jill Walters, participating in her first Pacific Games.

    “I have worked hard for this day,” she said after her win. “I made a huge commitment and have sacrificed. Would it mean anything to you if it cost you nothing? I am surprised to win today’s event.”

    In women’s rugby, Fiji made history by collecting gold in the first Pacific Games women’s rugby league competition with a 16-4 win over Papua New Guinea.

    Cook Islands secured the bronze medal by defeating Samoa 24-10.

    Click here to view the competition schedule. 

    Written by Greer Wilson.

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