Cook Islands 7s teams before leaving Brisbane for Honiara on Thursday. CIRU/23111614
The Cook Islands men’s 7s team is aiming to return home with a medal from the 2023 Pacific Games in Honiara, Solomon Islands.
The team is determined to make their mark on the international stage, showcasing the talent of local players, will face Nauru in their opening match.
by Andrew Iro, the team arrived in Honiara on Thursday after competing in the
Oceania 7s tournament in Brisbane.
said seven Rarotonga-based players made up the Oceania team, led by Stephen
Willis, and five were from New Zealand.
team to the Solomon Islands is entirely composed of local players. We want to
develop our local talent, and this is an opportunity for them to compete at an
international level,” said Iroa.
team has been training since June, with fundraising efforts on the side. Their
goal is clear: to secure a medal at the Pacific Games.
are definitely here to get a medal,” Iroa stated confidently.
Tonga and Nauru in the same pool, Iroa is optimistic about their chances of
reaching the medal playoffs.
have a good chance of making it to the medal playoffs, the quarter-finals,” he
acknowledged that their biggest competition would be Tonga, Fiji, and Samoa –
the powerhouses of Pacific 7s.
biggest challenge here will be getting our local players to perform at an
international level,” Iroa noted.
the beginning of their training, the team has focused on the belief of coming
from a nation of 18,000 people, drawing inspiration from the biblical story of
David and Goliath.
parents and the pastors we met here have consistently reminded us of the
biblical phrase of David and Goliath, emphasising the importance of putting God
first in everything we do. And with the hard work you’ve put in back home, you
just have to believe,” Iroa emphasised.
team has been away from home since the Oceania 7s and will return on November
28 after the Pacific Games.
know our families, girlfriends, and boyfriends are definitely thinking of us
and praying for us. I would like to express our gratitude and blessings to them
as well,” Iroa conveyed.
is in high spirits. We are looking forward to this tournament as it’s a
The three-day rugby
7s competition begins on Thursday, November 23 (Solomon Islands time).