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New Zealand name 15-strong athletics team for Paris 2024 Olympics Games


New Zealand will take 15 of the nation's finest in athletics to compete at this year's Olympics Games.

The squad will enter Paris 2024 with a high level of excitement and expectation around their potential to medal, following the success of last month's World Indoor Championships in Glasgow where New Zealand finished third on the medal table with two golds and two silvers.

Hamish Kerr took home gold in the men's high jump, setting a new national record of 2.36m, the other gold came from Geordie Beamish in the men's 1500m.

Beamish will make his Olympic debut in the men’s 3000m steeplechase, the Hawke's Bay native will become the first Kiwi steeplechaser at an Olympic Games in 40 years.

A fan favourite from the Rio 2016 Games where she surprised the world to win bronze in the women's pole vault, Eliza McCartney has battled with injury ever since. But after focusing on getting her body right and improving her technique, the 27-year-old has come into form at the right time, winning silver in Glasgow.

“It’s hard to put into words what this means to me after the rollercoaster ride of the last four years,” McCartney said.

“I started this Olympic campaign knowing full well I may never go to the Olympics again, so to have reached this point is incredibly special and a huge honour.”

Tom Walsh also won silver in the men's shotput - the defending Commonwealth champion now sets his sights on winning medals at three consecutive Olympics, claiming bronze at both Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020.

All four World Indoor medalists headline NZ's Olympic team for athletics, along with Jacko Gill (men's shotput), Maddi Wesche (women's shotput), Zoe Hobbs (women's 100m), Sam Tanner (men's 1500m), Camille French (women's marathon), Connor Bell (men’s discus), Tori Peters (women’s javelin), Lauren Bruce (women’s hammer), Olivia McTaggart (women's pole vault), Imogen Ayris (women's pole vault), and Ethan Olivier (men's triple jump).

Hobbs will be the first Kiwi to compete in the women's 100m at the Olympics since 1976 - the 26-year-old sprinter from Auckland has been setting a blistering pace as the first Oceania women to break the 11-second barrier.

“I’ve had the dream of going to the Olympics since I was a little kid, I’ve been doing sports since the age of five and it’s something I’ve always wanted to achieve," Hobbs said.

“It’s a real privilege, it’s been a number of years since we’ve had a woman compete in the 100m for New Zealand and I’m really looking forward to it.”

The athletics will be contested in Paris from July 27th to August 5th at Stade de France, with the marathon to wind its way through the city, taking in several famous landmarks.

All selections are conditional on confirmation of an Olympic quota place which is expected to be received early July.

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