14 Dec 2007

Samoan weightlifters deplore losing training venue

4:08 pm on 14 December 2007

The decision by Samoa prime minister to close the main weightlifting venue at Faleata sports complex after last month's World Cup event has been questioned by the Weightlifting Federation president, Tuaopepe Jerry Wallwork.

The president says the closure also means the lifters have no access to the weighlifting equipment which is locked up in the gym.

Tuaopepe says this will have a huge impact on training for Commonwealth and South Pacific Games gold medallist female lifter, Ele Opeloge, who qualified for the Beijing Olympics.

According to Tuaopepe, the government has decided to use the gym to train athletes in other sports codes, like rugby and boxing.

But Tuaopepe says this is still to be confirmed and the Federation is trying to find out the reason behind closing the sporting venue to their training.

Meanwhile, Opeloge, who won three gold medals at the SPG, was in tears at a media conference where she called on the prime minister to reconsider his decision.