Melanesia tops Oceania Cup

The combined Melanesian athletics team won the 2023 Oceania Cup held in Saipan, Northern Marianas at the weekend.

The team comprised athletes from Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, and Norfolk Island.

The competition pitted athletes from the three regions in Oceania with Melanesia garnering the most points with 273 points, followed by Polynesia in second with 196; Australia in third with 190; Micronesia in fourth with 163; and the host nation finished fifth with 138.

Among the highlights in the women's competition were Leonie Beu (Melanesia) winning the 200m and the 400m; Edna Boafob (Melanesia) taking out the 400m hurdles and the high jump; Rellie Kaputin (Melanesia) winning the long and triple jumps; and Alexandra Morgan (Australia) recording 50.96m in the discus.

In the men's individual events, Leroy Kamau (Melanesia) won both sprints, Nicholas Kollias (Australia) finished well ahead of his nearest rival in the high jump; Liam Fairweather (Australia) reached an impressive 7.68m in the long jump; Inoke Waisake (Melanesia) winning his event, the triple jump, by some distance; and Jonathan Datageouwa (Micronesia) dominating the shot putt.

Polynesia consisted of American Samoa, Cook Islands, French Polynesia, Hawaii, Samoa, Tonga, and Tuvalu, while Micronesia was made up of the Federated States of Micronesia, Guam, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, and Palau.

Australia and the Northern Marianas, as the hosts, competed as individual teams.