Cook Islanders Taiki Paniani and Aidan Zittersteijn won bronze in the men’s pairs bowling on Sunday with a 17-11 victory over Malta. It was the country’s first ever medal-placing at a Commonwealth Games.
The duo will arrive into the country on Wednesday and will be accorded a traditional welcome.
They will be accompanied by 10 other athletes from lawn bowls, plus weightlifter Luisa Peters. New Zealand-based Zittersteijn told Stuff.co.nz that they felt amazing after winning the country’s first medals.
“I just thought anything’s possible, so I just went out there and played the game,” he said. “We’ve got 28 people over here – I think about 20 of them were here (at the match). It was really noisy.”
Zittersteijn loved the atmosphere of the Gold Coast Games, and has his sights set on the Cook Islands team for Birmingham 2022.
“It’s just been an amazing experience for me and the team because our team are all young. Just the vibe of every country there is just amazing.”
Women’s Shot Put: Tereapii Tapoki threw 12.60m in Group B of the qualifying round but that wasn’t enough to advance to the final. Women’s Discus: Tereapii Tapoki finished 10th with a throw of 46.01m, which was 11m off the bronze-medal placing.
Lawn Bowls: Women’s Pair - Scotland beat Cook Islands 36-10, Brunei Darussalam beat Cook Islands 28-8; Men’s Four - Canada beat Cook Islands 21-12, Wales beat Cook Islands 14-4.