Team Northern Marianas in doubt for Pacific Games

SASNOC President, Fepulea’i Patrick Fepulea’i signing the agreement with the Pacific Games Chief Executive Officer, Falefata Matatia this morning

By Rula Su’a – Vaai

APIA, SAMOA –WEDNESDAY 23 JANUARY 2019: Less than 6 months to the Pacific Games in Apia and Northern Marianas has yet to officially confirm its participation.

Still listed as one of the 26 countries taking part, the Chief Executive Officer for Pacific Games Samoa, Falefata Hele Matatia told Talamua that there are issues with Team Northern Marianas management that needs to be sorted out.

“Yes, there are some issues that they are trying to sort out,” said Falefata. “I cannot comment on what is going on, but they are still counted as one of the 24 countries on the list of participating countries. They have not given us an actual confirmation on their final numbers of athletes for the Pacific Games.”

Matatia refused to comment on reports that it is due to high airfares that Northern Marianas have delayed any official response on taking part in the Pacific Games.

“I cannot comment on that, because that is on them.”

Memorandum of Understanding.
Today marks another milestone for Pacific Games Samoa’s preparation towards the Pacific Games in July this year.

President of the Samoa Association of Sports National Olympic Committee, Fepuleai Patrick Fepuleai and Pacific Games Chief Executive Officer Falefata Hele Matatia signed an agreement that both entities will work together to ensure that all athletes will be well looked after.

The Multipurpose Gym, one of the main venues for the games under construction at Tuanaimato Sports Complex

According to Fepuleai, there are a lot of issues for the betterment of the Pacific Games that are tied under the agreement.

“We will be looking at promoting the sports, enticing people with the skills to take part, sponsorships, and make sure that we have to do every way we can to achieve our aim in topping the medal tally.”

“It has not happened before, but we are looking at 500 players, for all sports, so it is a target,” added Fepuleai.

Meanwhile, Falefata said the Games preparations are on track. “Actually it is ahead.”

Twenty four countries will participate including New Zealand and Australia to compete in 26 sports.