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Delaveuve: ''The Arafura Games was a good step in the preparation plan''
Noumea (New Caledonia) - New Caledonia's Men's and Women's National Teams participated in the 2019 Arafura Games in Darwin, Australia as part of their preparation for the Pacific Games this July.
The New Caledonian teams advanced to the Semi-Finals of the Games but lost their respective matches in the medal round to settle for a double-fourth place finish.
The country's National Federation's (Région Fédérale de Nouvelle Calédonie de Basketball) Secretary General, Bridget Delaveuve accompanied the team's games in Darwin and shared her satisfaction in their performance.
"In general, we are satisfied with the results of our teams. It will help us identify what will be the things we need to work on as a team," Delaveuve said. "The Arafura Games was a good step in the preparation plan - Coaches were able to test all of their players."
The Women's Tournament featured six teams including Chinese Taipei, Northern Territory, Australian Defence Force, New Caledonia, Johor Malaysia, and Torres Strait. NCL finished the Group Phase with a 2-3 record but succumbed to Chinese Taipei (45-92) in the Semi-Final round and to the Australia Defence Force (39-55) in the medal round to settle for a fourth-place finish.
In the Men's Tournament, New Caledonia also finished fourth in the 12-team tournament. NCL finished second in Group A with a 2-1 record to advance to the Playoff Round. The team went on to eliminate Chinese Taipei (83-72) and the Australian Defense Force (71-58) but fell short in the Bronze Medal game against WA Indigenous (72-77).
New Caledonia Men's team Head Coach, Benjamin Guy emphasized the value of their participation in the Games in preparation for the Pacific Games.
"It was a very interesting competition and we had a good look at the players that we would want for the final team that will compete in the Pacific games," Guy said.
"Two months before the games, this is the perfect opportunity for the coaches to gauge where we are as a team," he added.
In the 2015 Pacific Games, New Caledonia placed sixth and seventh in the Women's and Men's competition respectively.
"It is important for us to perform well in the Pacific Games. Our goal is to be well prepared, represent our country well, and improve our standing from the previous edition," Delaveuve shared.
"The players, coaches, and officials have given their maximum effort to prepare for this tournament. We all have made sacrifices with most of them being volunteers. But the passion for New Caledonian basketball is what drives us," she added.