Sport: Pacific Games venues to be tested in Port Moresby
A number of Pacific Games venues will be used in competition for the first time this weekend.
A number of Pacific Games venues will receive their first big test this weekend, with a series of practice events in Port Moresby.
The Sir John Guise Outdoor Stadium, which will host the Games' opening and closing ceremonies, is among the venues being used for the first time.
The CEO of the Games Organising Committee, Peter Stewart, told Vinnie Wylie most of the venues are close to completion with three weeks until the Games begin.
PETER STEWART: So we're in a process at the moment where we're bumping in the things that we need to bump in and the contractors are finishing off the last bits that they need to finish off and moving their equipment out so it varies depending on the venue but it's working together during that period of time, which is a normal process that happens from a Games perspective.
VINNIE WYLIE: Team PNG have been having similar challenges in the sense that most of them are based in PNG and therefore they've had to be creative in terms of where they train and how they train, and a lot of athletes have travelled overseas for various competitions. When do you expect them or any other athletes might be able to get a look through and a test of some of these venues?
PS: For the next couple of weeks we've got test events running, starting on the weekend of the 13th and 14th, and then the following weekend we've got test events in virtually all of the venues. They range from full-on elite-level competition to school competitions. They give us an opportunity to test the fields of play [and] make sure that they're suitable. It gives us an opportunity to put a crowd into the venues so we're certainly very interested in doing that. It gives people a chance to have a look at the venues so we know that nowadays with mobile phones there will be photos going everywhere on social media, showing what these venues are, and we think that's fantastic because it will show just the quality of the venues where people are going to be able to come and that of course helps with ticket sales and the more tickets we sell the better the crowd, and that's better for the athletes to be competing in front of a large crowd.
VW: You mention ticket sales. A lot of people will be coming in - athletes, officials, some fans - logistically speaking how are things faring in that regard?
PS: We've sold over 180 thousand tickets, which we're very pleased about. We have around half a million tickets available. The main smaller venue events - particularly weightlifting, basketball, volleyball - they're selling out very quickly. Swimming is totally sold out - you can't get a ticket for swimming anymore. The weightlifting is about 90 percent sold out [and] all of the packages that we had, that allowed people to see every day of a particular sport or every day in a particular venue, for some of those venues sold out already but day tickets are still available. We have plenty of tickets available for soccer, softball, lawn bowls, touch football, which are all at Bisini, and we have plenty of tickets for athletics and rugby sevens and rugby nines, which are at Sir John Guise Outdoor Stadium, which are [being played at] big venues that can accommodate a number of people.
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