Testing the waves

Team Fiji Va’a reps Talei Simpson, Alicia Semisi, Kara Vateitei and Julia Sokula in action during their training in Suva. Picture: JOVESA NAISUA

THE Fijian Va’a team aims to win six gold medals during the Samoa Pacific Games which is scheduled for July 7 to 20 in Samoa. The team of 26 paddlers is training every morning at the Fiji Sailing Centre at Laucala Bay, Suva.

Head coach Duane Reiher said the team had made its goal of six medals which they had been working towards. “We have a young talented crew this year,” Reiher said.

“If everyone is healthy and preparations are not hampered by weather and sickness, we should be up for the challenge we have set ourselves months ago which was to aim for six gold medals.

“These young athletes have the talent and if it all comes together on the day then anything is possible.”

Despite the recent unfavourable conditions in Suva for the water sport, the team has been braving windy mornings as they prepare for July.

“Our only drawback at the moment is the weather and sickness, the weather has not been best for water sports.

“Despite the conditions the team has braved the recent windy and rough conditions to continue with the programs on the water to prepare for the games,” said Reiher.

“This has also come at a cost with a number of the athletes catching the flue that is currently going around. We just keep reminding ourselves that these are things we cannot control and all our efforts and focus is put on what we can control,” he added.

Squad: Tomasi Andrea, Cecil Eastgate, Abraham Fong, Clayton Horsfall, Apisai Kalou, Ratu Goleanavanua Lesuma, Wilisoni Naqasima, Toma Pene, Andrew Peters, Keanu Reiher, Taine Reiher, John Semisi, Johji Wong. Women: Alicia Semisi, Luna Campbell, Merelesita Fong, Taleivini Kaimacuata, Nanise Soko, Julia Sokula, Salome Tabuatalei, Sera Loki Talouli, Lilian Traill, Elenoa Vateitei, Karalaini Vateitei, Susana Vocea and Krystelle Whippy.

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