2007 SOUTH PACIFIC GAMES

The 2007 Pacific Games were held in Apia, Samoa, from 25 August to 8 September 2007. The Games were also known as the XIII South Pacific Games. The Games were the thirteenth Pacific Games to be held since the event’s inception in 1963 and included traditional multi-sport event disciplines, such as athletics and swimming, alongside region-specific and smaller events such as outrigger canoeing, surfing and lawn bowls. The principal venue for the Games was Apia Park, with other events taking place at the Faleata Sporting Complex and at other locations around Samoa. In comparison to the Olympic Games, which are expected to generate income for the host nation, the 2007 Pacific Games are expected to leave Samoa US$92 million in debt, predominantly as a result of expenditure on large-scale infrastructure projects such as bridges and roads.

Athletics competitions were held at the Apia Park in Apia, Samoa, between September 3–8, 2007. A total of 45 events were contested, 23 by men and 22 by women. This year 6 games records were set (1 by the men and 5 by the women). Out of the 135 medals given away Fiji won the most with 12 gold medals, 17 silver medals and 4 medals for a total of 33 medals. New Caledonia and Papua New Guinea tied in second, both winning 27 medals. The hosts (Samoa) came fifth, receiving only nine medals.

Makelesi

Picture: Makelesi Batimala, nicknamed the “Sprint Queen” by the Fiji Times and Fiji Village, she has represented her country in several international competitions, including the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens. She won four gold medals at the 2003 South Pacific Games, in the 100m, 200m, 400m and 4 × 100 m relay events. She also won the women’s 200m sprint at the Australian Athletics Championships in 2008. While taking part in the 2007 World Athletics Championships, she qualified to represent Fiji at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. She was Fiji’s flag bearer at the Games’ opening ceremony.

Overall Medal Tally

Rank Nation Gold Silver Bronze Total
1 Fiji 12 17 4 33
2 New Caledonia 9 8 10 27
3 Tahiti 9 7 7 23
4 PNG 8 8 11 27
5 Samoa 4 2 3 9
6 Cook Islands 1 1 1 3
7 Tonga 1 1 0 2
8 Wallis and Futuna 1 0 0 1
9 Solomon Islands 0 1 4 5
10 Vanuatu 0 0 4 4