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Team NWT sitting eighth at Games

Hot, humid weather taking toll on players

Chris Puglia
Northern News Services

Yellowknife (Aug 02/02) - Team NWT arrived in Winnipeg last weekend to begin competition in the 2002 North American Indigenous Games.

The intercontinental event pits 45 aboriginal teams from various points across the continent against each other in a number of sporting events.

Roy Desjarlais of Sport North said he is impressed with the way Team NWT has performed.

"They are holding their own. Being in eighth position out of 45 teams has got to be good," said Desjarlais.

Desjarlais said he doesn't expect the team to hold that position in the medal race as competitions progress and further events close, but he doesn't expect them to drop very far either.

"We're hoping for no lower than 15th or 16th," he said.

One of the biggest obstacles Team NWT is facing are hot and humid temperatures they are not used to experiencing.

This week temperatures soared to 32 C in Winnipeg.

"They are drinking lots of water," said Desjarlais. "They are coping but it's brutal. A couple of them are beet red."

As of Wednesday, Team NWT had collected a number of medals and were waiting for results of events yet to begin.

There are 152 athletes competing for Team NWT.

As well, there are 29 cultural representatives who perform on a daily basis. The cultural competition demonstrations also took place on Wednesday, events included the blanket toss.