Kiribati at the 2008 Summer Olympics

Kiribati competed in the Summer Olympic Games for the second time at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, China, following their debut appearance in the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece. The country had intended to send a total of three athletes to the Games, competing in two sports: athletics and weightlifting. Female sprinter Kaitinano Mwemweata had to withdraw due to illness after contracting tuberculosis.

Kiribati at the
2008 Summer Olympics
Flag of Kiribati.svg
NOCKiribati National Olympic Committee
in Beijing
Competitors2 in 2 sports
Flag bearer David Katoatau
Summer Olympics appearances (overview)


Kiribati had interest in Olympic participation in the 1980s, and the country later formed their National Olympic Committee (NOC) in 2002, which was recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in 2003.[1]:311 Kiribati's first Games was in 2004.[2] As of these Olympics, Kiribati had never won an Olympic medal.[3]

Weightlifter David Katoatau was Kiribati's flag bearer for the opening ceremonies.[4] The flag bearer for the closing ceremony was Kiribati NOC president Birimaka Tekanene.[5]

Athletics (track and field)Edit

Kaitinano Mwemweata fell ill and did not participate in the Olympics, and was treated for tuberculosis instead.[6] Her withdrawal left Kiribati with one representative in athletics.[7] Rabangaki Nawai was entered in the 100 meter and 200 meter sprint events. Nawai ran a personal season's best time of 11.29 seconds in the first round of the 100 meter sprint. He had the fastest reaction time in the heat, but placed last, and failed to progress to the next round.[8] He did not run in the 200 meter competition for undisclosed reasons.[7][9]


  • Note: Ranks given for track events are within the athlete's heat only
  • Q = Qualified for the next round
  • q = Qualified for the next round as a fastest loser or, in field events, by position without achieving the qualifying target
  • NR = National record
  • N/A = Round not applicable for the event
  • Bye = Athlete not required to compete in round

Athlete Event Heat Quarter-final Semi-final Final
Result Rank Result Rank Result Rank Result Rank
Rabangaki Nawai 100 m 11.29 8 Did not advance


David Katoatau represented Kiribati in the men's 85 kg class of the weightlifting competition, qualifying by wildcard.[10] He finished in 15th place, ahead of Terrence Dixie of Seychelles and five lifters who did not finish the event.[11]

Athlete Event Snatch Clean & Jerk Total Rank
Result Rank Result Rank
David Katoatau Men's −85 kg 135 18 178 15 313 15[12]


  1. ^ Grasso, John; Mallon, Bill; Heijmans, Jeroen (14 May 2015). Historical Dictionary of the Olympic Movement. Rowman & Littlefield.
  2. ^ Bingham, Eugene (31 July 2004). "First-time Olympians beat odds". NZ Herald. Retrieved 5 May 2018.
  3. ^ "Kiribati". Sports Reference. Retrieved 6 May 2018.
  4. ^ "David Katoatau". Retrieved 7 May 2018.
  5. ^ "Closing Ceremony Flag bearers" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 28 August 2012.
  6. ^ "Kiribati athletes ready for Olympic competition". ABC Radio Australia. Archived from the original on 8 September 2008.
  7. ^ a b "Kiribati sends three athletes to Beijing Olympics". Xinhua News Agency. 5 August 2008. Archived from the original on 24 August 2008. Retrieved 28 June 2018.
  8. ^ "Rabangaki's season's best!". Kiribati Athletics Association. 15 August 2008. Retrieved 17 May 2018.
  9. ^ "200m Men". Retrieved 27 June 2018.
  10. ^ "Hale to Olympics". Solomon Star. 14 July 2008. Archived from the original on 25 October 2008. Retrieved 7 May 2018.
  11. ^ "2008 Summer Olympics Results - Weightlifting". ESPN. Retrieved 17 May 2018.
  12. ^ "Weightlifting at the 2008 Beijing Summer Games: Men's Light-Heavyweight". Sports Reference. Retrieved 27 June 2018.