Samoa PM not after special treatment in Pacific Games return

The President of the Archery Samoa Federation says the Prime Minister will be just another member of the team when he competes at the Pacific Games in July.

Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi won a silver medal in the mixed recurve team event at the 2007 Games in Apia and announced at the weekend his intention to represent Samoa once again at the 2019 event on home soil.

President of the Archery Samoa Federation, Muaausa Joseph Walter, competed alongside the Prime Minister 12 years ago and said he always expected the 74-year-old would want to give the Games another crack.

"When he competes with us I suppose he takes off his Prime Minister hat and he's part of the group," he said.

"He's a real down to earth person and the thing about him is he's really passionate about the sport and so we work very well with him and we had some good times, some good memories with him (from competing in the 2007 Pacific Games)."

Tuilaepa insisted he would have to earn his place in the Pacific Games archery team like any other competitor, but Muaausa Joseph Walter said the Prime Minister's place in Samoa's squad of six men and six women was already confirmed.

"He's already on the team our Prime Minister," said the 2008 Olympian, who is also among the chosen competitors. "But he's training hard, he's training very hard for the Games, so he's putting a lot of emphasis and effort in so good on him."

The Prime Minister is expected to compete in both the individual and team events for the compound bow, Muaausa said.

An Olympic qualifying spot will also be up for grabs in the mixed team event in Apia, with the Oceania Continental Championship being run alongside the Games event.