Team sports to miss Commonwealth Games

Only individual athletes have a chance of participating in next year's Commonwealth Games in Australia.

15 December 2017 | Sports

Namibian sport teams will not take part in the Commonwealth Games to be held in Queensland, Australia, from 4 to 15 April next year, Namibia National Olympic Committee (NNOC) president Abner Xoagub said yesterday.

Sport codes which might take part in the Games are boxing, cycling, gymnastics, para-sport, swimming, athletics, triathlon and bowling.

Rugby sevens, hockey and netball participation was determined on ranking by international federations and only the top 15 teams were invited. Namibia's netball team is ranked 37th in the world out of 38.

Rebekka /Goagoses from Netball Namibia said the team had not played many international matches. She said it would take time for the team to take part in events of this magnitude as they needed to improve their ranking first.

Namibia was allocated 27 spots for athletes who might qualify for the 2018 Commonwealth Games and these athletes will be selected based on their performance and participation throughout the year.

Xoagub said some have not qualified yet.

“We were given a quota, but if athletes don't qualify, we will take those who qualify even if they are few,” he said.

Some of the athletes who might make the list are Maike Helga Diekman (rowing), Jonas Junias Jonas (boxing), Matias Hamunyela (boxing), Tristan De Lange (cycling), Jean-Paul Burger (triathlon), Nestori Thomas (boxing) and Tryagain Ndevelo (boxing).

These athletes received 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympic Games scholarships from the NNOC recently. The scholarships will make provision for athletes to train at high-performance facilities to enable them to qualify for the 2020 Summer Games in Tokyo.

Boxer Jonas said he was preparing for the Commonwealth Games as well as the Olympic Games. “I am focusing on the Commonwealth Games and the preparation is going well,” he said.

The sportsmen and woman will be aided by the N$4 million that the Namibia Sport Commission (NSC) recently handed over to the NNOC.

The money will be used for flight tickets, team uniforms, medical expenses and preparation grants.

LIMBA MUPETAMI

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