The national team to the event, also counted as the 5th Asian Indoor Games from September 17 to 27, will be made up of aquatics, athletics, 3x3 women’s basketball and weightlifting.
Eleven athletes have qualified to represent the country.
Cook Islands Sports and National Olympic Committee secretary general Robert Graham said this was a momentous occasion for Cook Islands and the other Oceania National Olympic Committee members who have been invited to compete.
However, he said all athletes selected in the Team Cook Islands had to pass selection criteria before making the final cut.
“We have selection criteria in place and all athletes who have been selected had to meet certain standards before qualifying for this games,” said Graham, who is also Team Cook Islands chef de mission.
“We don’t just pick a sport because it’s being held at the Games. There is a criteria which the athletes need to overcome and approved by the sports selection committee.”
Graham said since this was their first time at the Asian Indoor Games, they had not set high goals for the team.
He said the 2017 Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games provided a perfect opportunity for the participating athletes to improve on their personal bests and set higher standards.
“Since this is our first time at the event, we are only hoping for good results. At this stage, we are not aiming for medals but we are knocking the door and hoping for the best.”
Ashgabat, first in the former Soviet Central Asian region, won the right to host the Asian Indoor Games in 2010.
In 2013, the flag of the Olympic Council of Asia was officially handed over to the mayor of the city of Ashgabat.
The Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games will be held at the Ashgabat Olympic Complex – a unique facility which has no parallel in the Central Asian region.
The Complex boasts of over 30 structures, which also includes 15 competition venues, an Athletes’ Village and a Paralympic Rehabilitation Medical Center. For the convenience of athletes and spectators, the Olympic village will have all necessary infrastructure including social, cultural and shopping centres, hotels, restaurants, cafes, shops, consumer services and car park.
Around 6000 athletes from 62 countries will compete in 21 events at the Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games.
Team Cook Islands – Athletics: Patricia Taea, Tereapii Tapoki, Anthony Fairweather – Coach; Basketball 3 On 3: Adonia Lewis, Terai Sadler, Janet Main, Keziah Lewis, Owen Lewis – Coach: Swimming: Bede Aitu, Kirsten Fisher-Marsters, Temaruata Strickland: Weightlifting: Phillipa Woonton, Luisa Peters, Unakea Kauvai – Coach