NZ Athlete Withdraws From Games Over ‘Inappropriate’ Instagram Posts

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By Joel Fitzpatrick, Port Moresby 2015 Games News Service

PORT MORESBY, July 6 – The New Zealand Olympic Committee (NZOC) confirmed on Sunday that one of its athletes has withdrawn from the Port Moresby 2015 Pacific Games, following reports that weightlifter Douglas Sekone-Fraser (NZL) had been expelled from the team.

Sekone-Fraser had posted two photos to Instagram, each with the hashtag “cannibals”. One of the photos appeared to show Papua New Guinea’s in traditional sing-sing attire.

The NZOC released a statement saying it was “deeply disappointed” to see “inappropriate social media posts” made by a team member.

“We would like to formally and unreservedly apologise for any offence these commen’s have caused our host nation and our fellow competitors at the Pacific Games,” the statement read.

“The commen’s do not in any way reflect the thoughts of the wider New Zealand Pacific Games team who have had enjoyed a warm and welcoming experience in Port Moresby.”

When approached for comment at the BSP Power Dome on Monday, New Zealand team management told the Games News Service that Sekone-Fraser’s teammates were unavailable to comment on his withdrawal.

Sekone-Fraser had been slated to compete in the men’s up to 85kg division.

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