Sports Talk - Pacific Games Boxers: Baby, Duken, Lolo & Roman representing their heritage
The 2023 Pacific Games in the Solomon Islands are currently in full swing with 24 Pacific Island & Oceania nations competing.
For many of the athletes, the Pacific Games gives them not only valuable experience and competition but a chance to qualify for the Olympic Games in Paris next year.
We talk to four boxers based in New Zealand who are in the Solomon Islands to represent their heritage and home islands of Niue, Samoa and Tonga. They share with us the preparation and training that has gone into qualifying for the games, why it's special for them to be able to represent their island nations, what they've done to prepare for the Solomon Islands heat and more.
UPDATE: Results of all four boxers below -
Unfortunately Lolo Jnr was stopped from boxing on advice from the Ring Doctor (during medical checks on the first fight day of competition), although he had been cleared to fight by the cardiologist at the Pacific Games medical centre previously.
Baby Nansen was awarded bronze in her weight division for Samoa and has another chance to qualify for the Olympics in a qualifying fight in Thailand next year.
Roman Viney made it through to the finals in his weight division for Tonga and was awarded Silver after a close fight with the Australian #1. He has another chance to qualify for the Olympics in qualifying fights in either Thailand or Italy early next year.
Duken Williams went all the way and won Gold for Niue. His gold medal was one of only two medals won for Niue at the games. If there is no other way to make the Olympics next year (Niue is not eligible for the Olympics) Duken told us he will go pro. One to watch for sure!
Public Interest Journalism funded by NZ on Air
Filmed & interviewed by Penina Momoiseā
Edited by Laura Mcbeath