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Nauru at the 2016 Summer Olympics

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Nauru at the
2016 Summer Olympics
Flag of Nauru.svg
NOCNauru Olympic Committee
in Rio de Janeiro
Competitors2 in 2 sports
Flag bearerElson Brechtefeld (opening)
Ovini Uera (closing)
Summer Olympics appearances (overview)

Nauru competed at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from 5 to 21 August 2016. The country's participation in Brazil was its sixth consecutive appearance at the Summer Olympics since its debut at the 1996 Summer Olympics. Nauru's delegation included two participants: Ovini Uera, a judoka in the men's middleweight judo category; and Elson Brechtefeld in the men's 56 kg weightlifting competition. Uera qualified as Nauru's top-ranked judoka, in the IJF World Ranking List through a quota slot from the Oceania Judo Union. Brechtefeld qualified by grant from the International Weightlifting Federation of an unused quota place. Uera was eliminated by Varlam Liparteliani in the round of 16 and Brechtefeld finished 15th in his event.


Nauru participated in six Summer Olympic Games between its debut in the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, United States and the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.[1] The country sent its largest delegation to a Summer Games when three athletes took part in both the 1996 and 2004 Olympics. Nauru has yet to win its first Olympic medal.[1]

The Nauru National Olympic Committee selected two athletes, having chosen for the second successive time to compete only in judo and weightlifting.[2] This was Nauru's second-largest team sent to the Olympics, tying with 2000 in Sydney and 2012 in London for this number of athletes. The Nauruan athletes chosen were judoka Ovini Uera in the men's 90 kg category, and weightlifter and 2010 Youth Olympian Elson Brechtefeld (men's 56 kg).[3] Brechtefeld was the flag bearer for the opening ceremony and Uera for the closing ceremony.[4][5]


Nauru qualified one judoka for the men's middleweight category (90 kg) at the Games. Ovini Uera earned the continental quota spot from the Oceania region, as Nauru's top-ranked judoka in the IJF World Ranking List of 30 May 2016.[6] Uera said in an interview that he started judo in 2012 from his need to learn grapples in boxing. He said he "immediately fell in love with the sport".[7]

Judo is really small in the island, there is only about, 20 judokas on the island, and every time I train, I have to train only three people, every judo session, because all the rest they are, mostly kids.

— Ovini Uera, [7]

Uera produced the nation's best result with an opening-round triumph over Belize's Renick James, before falling short in his next match to eventual silver medal winner Varlam Liparteliani of Georgia.[8][9]

Athlete Event Round of 64 Round of 32 Round of 16 Quarterfinals Semifinals Repechage Final / BM
Ovini Uera Men's −90 kg Bye  James (BIZ)
W 100–000
 Liparteliani (GEO)
L 000–100
Did not advance


Nauru received an unused quota place from the IWF to send a male weightlifter to the Olympics, the nation's sixth consecutive participation.[10][1] Nauru has been relatively notable for its weightlifting, as one of its participants Marcus Stephen served as president of the country after his retirement from the sport.[11] The country has previously won a medal at every edition of the Commonwealth Games it has contested.[12][13] Brechtefeld successfully cleared his first and second snatch attempts of 95 kilograms (209 lb) and 98 kilograms (216 lb), but scratched his final attempt of 101 kilograms (223 lb). For the clean and jerk section, he completed his first attempt of 120 kilograms (260 lb). After failing his second attempt of 125 kilograms (276 lb), he succeeded in his final attempt of clearing the weight, ending up with a total score of 223 and ranking 15th and last of the competitors who achieved a total.[14][15]

Athlete Event Snatch Clean & Jerk Total Rank
Result Rank Result Rank
Elson Brechtefeld Men's 56 kg 98 17 125 15 223 15


  1. ^ a b c "Sports Reference – Countries – Nauru". Sports Reference. Archived from the original on 8 September 2016. Retrieved 16 February 2019.
  2. ^ Block, Melissa (14 August 2016). "Nauru's Olympic Team Is An Army Of Two". NPR. Retrieved 26 September 2016.
  3. ^ "Sports Reference – Countries – Nauru 2016". SportsReference. Retrieved 16 February 2019.
  4. ^ "The Flagbearers for the Rio 2016 Opening Ceremony". International Olympic Committee. Retrieved 5 August 2016.
  5. ^ "YOG athletes fly the flag in stunning Opening Ceremony". International Olympic Committee. 6 August 2016. Retrieved 26 September 2016.
  6. ^ "IJF Officially Announces Qualified Athletes for Rio 2016 Olympic Games". International Judo Federation. 23 June 2016. Archived from the original on 7 July 2016. Retrieved 24 June 2016.
  7. ^ a b Ovini Uera (13 August 2016). Ovini Uera: The Judoka From Nauru. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: BBC World Service. Event occurs at 1m10s. Retrieved 13 August 2016.
  8. ^ Peritz, Ingrid (17 August 2016). "Rio Olympics "a dream come true" for judo athlete from tiny island nation". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 26 September 2016.
  9. ^ "Rio de Janeiro 2016 men's 90 kg contests results". International Judo Federation. Retrieved 19 February 2019.
  10. ^ "Second day of the IWF Executive Board meeting in Tbilisi". International Weightlifting Federation. 23 June 2016. Retrieved 23 June 2016.
  11. ^ "MPs oust Nauru's president". The Sydney Morning Herald. 19 December 2007. Archived from the original on 20 December 2007. Retrieved 7 April 2019.
  12. ^ Bull, Andy (31 July 2014). "Itte Detenamo strikes silver for Nauru, an island more used to phosphate". Retrieved 19 February 2019.
  13. ^ "Weightlifting Official Results" (PDF). Gold Coast 2018. 2018. Retrieved 7 April 2019.
  14. ^ "Rio 2016: Weightlifting". Rio 2016. Archived from the original on 17 April 2015. Retrieved 19 February 2019.
  15. ^ "Results XXXI Olympic Games". International Weightlifting Federation. Retrieved 19 February 2019.

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