Pacific Games in New Caledonia
Two athletes, one male and one female, were selected by KAA to compete for Kiribati in the Pacific Games which started on August 27 in New Caledonia.
A brave decision was made to enter Kaingaue David, an outstanding all-round athlete, for her first-ever Heptathlon. In earlier seasons, she has shown her ability in sprints and horizontal jumps, plus a willingness to compete in the throws too. However, for whatever reason (apart from inexperience) her first two events resulted in zero points. In the 100m. Hurdles she was disqualified, and in the High Jump she did not clear the opening height ! It is to her credit that she continued and finished her first day (Sept. 7th.) with a 200m. effort of 29.17 (worth a good 542 points) and 8.00m. in the Shot (worth 399 points). On the second day, she managed 3.91m. in the LJ (well below her best) for 287 points, and 16.54m. in the Javelin for 225 points. Unfortunately the result of the final Heptathlon event, 800m., was not displayed on the nc2011 web-site. It is to be hoped that she was not discouraged by this experience because she has as much potential as previous KAA multi-eventers had, e.g. Kimaia Dan Murdoch.
The male athlete was Raobu Tarawa, holder of both Shot and Discus National Records. Without the necessary information, it is not possible to say why he did not appear to compete in the Shot. In the Discus (Sept. 9th.) he threw 39.50m. to finish 9th. out of 12. This was below his best.
Thus, this was a disappointing competition for KAA. The implications include a possible difficulty, due to these weak results, of convincing the Kiribati Government to fund KAA athletes to travel to future multi-sport Games.