June 21, 2021 – Article from PNG Post Courier

Athletics PNG preparations for the World Cross Country Championships and Pacific Mini Games next year have received a boost with the return to full time training of Poro Gahekave and Messach Fred. 

Athletics PNG preparations for the World Cross Country Championships and Pacific Mini Games next year have received a boost with the return to full time training of Poro Gahekave and Messach Fred.

After 18 months back home in PNG since graduating from Lubbock Christian University, Gahekave has returned to the United States where she can properly focus on her training in an environment that is more conducive to the attainment of sporting success.

With the cross country season in the USA being held from August to November, this presents the 2019 Pacific Games triple gold medallist with a great opportunity to get an excellent preparation for the February 2022 World Cross Country Championships in Bathurst, New South Wales.

Meanwhile, Pacific Games 1500m silver medallist Messach Fred has also resumed serious training after spending a year in Queensland pursuing an educational opportunity, during which time his training took a back seat.

Messach has moved to the Oceania Athletics High Performance Training Centre at the Gold Coast and has joined the Gold Coast Run Co Club.

“Athletes usually come to the Centre on a trial basis and we expect to formalise a longer term scholarship for Messach by mid-July,” said Athletics PNG Secretary Philip Rehder.

Messach said he was really enjoying the training which is quite varied.

He is part of a squad of about 40 runners and they go to different places and run on all kinds of terrain.

Oceania AA are meeting all the costs including accommodation, coaching support, and living expenses with Airlines PNG contributing financially from its budget for the World Cross Country Championships.

World Athletics are providing a project Grant of $US40,000 over two years for Athletics PNG’s distance program for which the budget included the Kerowagi Training Camp, support to a smaller group training in East New Britain (Utmei) , some officials training ,and overseas training support for one male and one female athlete.