Sport in Tuvalu
This Polynesian island nation is located in the Pacific Ocean somewhere in between Hawaii and Australia. It used to be referred to as Ellice Islands and is comprised of three islands and six atolls and has a total land area of 10 square miles.
Their traditional sport is called kilikiti that has close resemblance to modern day cricket. Another traditional sport that is quite popular in Tuvali is Ano which is played with two hard round balls made from pandanus leaves and has rules that is very similar to volleyball.
Other traditional sports of the island includes foot racing, quarterstaff fencing, lance throwing and wrestling.
But when it comes to modern day sports, the most popular sport in Tuvalu is undoubtedly football and is governed by the Tuvalu National Football Association which has been an associate member of the Oceania Football Confederation since 2006.
In 2007, Tuvalu made history by being the first non-FIFA member to ever play in an official qualifying match for the World Cup. Even with football's popularity in the country, they are still yet to be a fully recognized FIFA member due to the lack of training facilities, stadiums and even hotels to accommodate visiting teams.
Below are details of sports, sporting events and sports people related to Tuvalu. Is there something missing? If you know of something that should be listed here, please let us know.
Popular sports of Tuvalu
- Football (Soccer), volleyball, rugby union, Futsal, Weightlifting
Traditional & Unique Sports of Tuvalu
- Kilikiti - similar to cricket
- Te Ano — (meaning 'the ball') a local version of volleyball
Tuvalu Sporting Success
Athletes from Tuvalu
- Tuau Lapua Lapua - weightlifter, won Tuvalu's first-ever gold medal in major sporting competition
Tuvalu Sports trivia
- Tuvalu attended its first Commonwealth Games in 1998 with one weightlifter.
- Tuvalu first competed at the Olympic Games in 2008.