23 Jul 2014

Sport: Ryan Pini backing Team PNG to excel in Glasgow

10:50 am on 23 July 2014

Papua New Guinea's most successful Commonwealth Games athlete has a new role this year and is confident his compatriots are ready for the spotlight.

Ryan Pini won gold in the 100m butterfly at the 2006 Melbourne Games and a silver medal in the same event in Delhi four years later.

He attended three Commonwealth events as an athlete but this year he only gets in the pool before training sessions, in his role as coach of PNG's six-strong swim team.

Flag bearer and Oceania Championships gold medallist Steven Kari is seen as the country's best chance for gold in weightlifting.

Ryan Pini is confident PNG's 94 athletes will perform strongly.

"And I'm sure with the amount of money that's been spent on the team as well, to be able to perform, it will be a fantastic sight for the Papua New Guineans back home who would like to see the money's been put to good use, which I'm sure it has been. We've got a really strong team here and everyone's looking really good so I can't wait to see some of the results coming out".

Ryan Pini's swimmers are among the first in action on Thursday with their coach hoping for personal best times and a possible semi final appearance.