WAF hopes to attract more female athletes as it builds up its team for the 2023 season that includes the New Zealand Nationals, World Archery Oceania Championships in Australia and the Pacific Games in Honiara, Solomon Islands
World Archery Fiji hopes to attract more female athletes as it builds up its team for the 2023 season that includes the New Zealand Nationals from 1-7 January, World Archery Oceania Championships in South Australia from 13 to 16 April and the Pacific Games in Honiara, Solomon Islands from19 November to 2 December, 2023.
World Archery Fiji Vice President, Ajay Ballu, said Team Fiji Archery is looking at defending some of its titles from the 2019 Pacific Games during the 2023 Pacific Games which includes the Compound Mixed team event.
"We had the team of Fred and Lisa Leota who won gold in that event, while Lisa would also wenton to win a silver medal in the Women’s Compound 50m and Women’s Match Play," he said.
"At the moment we have only one female athlete and she is based in the North."
Ajay said the National Federation (NF) is hopeful that Fred and Lisa, who are currently based in the United Kingdom, will be available to represent the country during the 2023 Pacific Games.
"But we also encourage females who would like to try the sport to get in touch with us through our social media Facebook page World Archery Fiji."
Ajay said first time athletes would not have to worry about equipment as the NF will provide this for those starting out.
"While we would love more female participation, the NF also has a set criterion for any athlete hoping to represent the country.
"We want our athletes to be competitive during competitions not only locally but also regionally and internationally," he said.
"Since the pandemic, our athletes have had little to no real competition, so we will ensure that we are in the right frame of mind and physically capable to compete at a high level," he said.
The NF last weekend, held its first qualifying event for local archers hoping to represent Fiji at the upcoming events.
"We have four more qualifying events until the first event which is the NZ Nationals in January 2023," Ajay said.
Team Fiji Archery currently holds the Compound Mixed Team 50m, Men’s Recurve 70m, and Men’s Match Play 50m Compound gold medal Pacific Games titles.
The NF is working on plans to ensure that athletes will be ready forthe 2023 Pacific Games which will be a qualifying event for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris, France.