Oceania institute sweeps Champs

Some of the 300 competitors from 20 countries at the start of competition yesterday

By Alan Ah Mu

APIA, 07 June 2012: It was predicted weightlifters who train at the Oceania Weightlifting Institute would do well in the Commonwealth and Oceania champs now progressing well in Samoa’s capital, Apia. The competition is held as part of the country’s celebration of 50 years of independence.

Coach of Team Samoa Tuaopepe Jerry Wallwork made the prediction.

It has proven so.

“The institute was a hit yesterday,” said its director Paul Coffa.

All of his students topped their divisions.

“Five out of five – jackpot,” said Coffa.

He referred to Manuele Tulo (56kg) of Fiji, Manuel Minginfel (62kg) of Federated States of Micronesia, Kathleen Hare (48kg) of Papua New Guinea, Dika Toua

(53kg) of Papua New Guinea and Maria Liku (58kg) of Fiji.

All won gold medals in the Oceania section of the champs.

At the Oceania Electoral Conference on Monday Coffa asked for lifters to attend the institute.

“It’s not a club,” he said.

It was an institute where lifters learned then returned to their countries to spread what their knowledge, he said.

Oceania Weightlifting Institute is located in New Caledonia and is supported financially by the International Olympic Committee (Solidarity).

Coffa created the institute in 2002 at his own cost in Sigatoka, Fiji.

It relocated to Samoa in 2005 before the shift to New Caledonia in 2008.

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