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Cikamata feels proud, challenges reps

Pravin Narain In Vanuatu
Wednesday, December 06, 2017

IT was a proud moment for young weight-lifter Eileen Cikamatana to represent the Fijian culture and wear a traditional masi at the official opening ceremony of the 2017 Pacific Mini Games on Monday night at Korman Stadium in Port Vila, Vanuatu.

The 18-year-old had been away from her family as she was training in Noumea in New Caledonia under the guidance of top weight-lifting coach Paul Coffa. She said it was a proud moment to lead Team Fiji at the Pacific Mini Games.

"It was an exciting and proud moment leading the team into the stadium and I am very happy," she said after the ceremony.

"The traditional masi which I wore represented the Fijian culture as it is a traditional outfit for the people of Fiji. I used the same outfit at the Asian Games in Turkmenistan."

She said the onus was on every athlete to give back to their country by winning the gold medal.

"There is a lot of patriotism in the team," she added.

Cikamatana, who hails from Taviya Village on Ovalau, will compete in the 90 kilograms category in the weight-lifting competition.

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