Cook Island Tauranga family and supporters. BADMINTON COOK ISLANDS / 23090609
Badminton Cook Islands team for the Zespri Games in New Zealand are doing well.
Badminton Cook Islands, as of yesterday Singles Champions for Division 2 Boys
was Makea Pauka, Division 2 Girls Runner-Up Talia Adams, Division 3 Girls
Champion Trudeinus Tuaputa, and Division 3 Girls Runner-Up Itirangi
Team Cook Islands
Final Singles Standings were: Edon Teraitua, Division 1 Top 16
Uhain Gamez, Division
1 Top 32, Haize Gamez, Division 1 Top 32, Claude Simpson, Division 2 Top 4,
Maraea Wichman, Division 2 Top 8, Terito Napa, Division 2 Top 16, Vincent Simpson,
Division, 2 Top 16, Siaosi Cowan, Division 2 Top 16, Victor Anselmo, Division 2
Top 32, Raeyaan Narayan, Division 2 Top 32 and Prince Strickland, Division 3
Islands President Thomas Ngauru said they are really proud of the team’s
performance and they have done well.
“For most of them this is their first time overseas, for an international tournament. It is all about getting them to that level of environment and learning how to handle their nerves and the crowd.”
He said the team’s
performance was more than expected.
The badminton team
will begin their doubles competition today to determine who goes into the division
the Cook Islands Tauranga family and supporters from the Cook Islands for being
there for the team.
He also acknowledged
major sponsor Bank South Pacific (BSP) and CITC (Cook Islands Trading
Corporation) for support in getting the team to New Zealand.
from the ages of 11 to 13 are representing the Cook Islands in the competition.
Meanwhile, a sense of
unity and connection was felt as international athletes were officially
welcomed to the Zespri AIMS Games for the first time since Covid-19.
athletes from the Cook Islands, Fiji and Samoa were treated to a powerful and
moving pōwhiri at Tauranga Intermediate School on Monday (NZ time).
pupils filled the hall with songs and haka, bringing cultures together as Cook
Islands and Fiji responded with their own prepared performances.
badminton team manager Ahkim Tikaroa said it was a “beautiful” welcome.
“The last time we
came, we didn’t have this, and it is an honour to witness.”
accounted for two per cent of attendees.
Cook Island players
will compete in badminton and tennis, the Fiji team will play rugby sevens and
Samoa, which has only two representatives, will play badminton.
A Cook Islands team
group leader and parent, who spoke at the powhiri, said he was thankful the
pupils were able to experience the different cultures with such a traditional
“The culture has
unity, respect and hospitality.”
“It’s an honour to be
a part of the AIMS games. Our goals for the tournament are to have fun, never
mind the results.”
School’s kapa haka team also performed at the opening ceremony on Sunday
evening, which was attended by 5000 people.
Kapa haka teacher
Edward Te Moana said: “It’s a really good opportunity for the indigenous
cultures to come together and keep that connection from all our families from
“It’s a good way to
calm themselves before the craziness of the games.
“I hope that for the
following years we keep these connections between us, not even between
indigenous cultures but as a whole of the AIMS games.”
A Tauranga City
Council spokeswoman said the event was able to bring all cultures together,
which was “incredible” especially after not being able to do that since 2019.
“By having a pōwhiri,
and welcoming international students, we are showing that Tauranga are the good
The spokeswoman said
there were 20,000 people in Tauranga for the week, which will bring about $4.5
million into the area and to local businesses.