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Rugby legend backs shearing Olympic sport call

Rugby legend backs shearing Olympic sport call


All Blacks great Sir Brian Lochore has sounded a wakeup call to world sporting bodies to sit up and give shearing sports the recognition it deserves.

Sir Brian, a Wairarapa farmer who contested in the first ever Golden Shears in Masterton in 1961, gave an almost “hero” status to today’s modern day international shearing guns in his speech at last night’s (Thursday March 1) Golden Shears World Championship dinner.

“Those competitors who are part of Golden Shears and now the World Championships are part of the World Cup of Shearing. Lets compare it to rugby. When New Zealand hosted the World Cup of rugby, we had the best players – the best prepared. Here in Masterton right now we have those same best players and the best prepared.”

Sir Brian said Golden Shears and the competitors who took part had champion quality.

“I absolutely support that shearing is no longer just a job. I do think that one day you will get it in the Olympics.”

Earlier this year, Federated Farmers mooted the idea that shearing become an Olympic sport.

The "time has come to elevate shearing's sporting status to the ultimate world stage," and that the world's top shearers were "athletes who take it to another level," said the New Zealand farming lobby group back in January.

Other highlights of the World Championship gala dinner held in Masterton at the end of day two of competition in the 52nd Golden Shears and 15th World Shearing Championships was the announcement that Ireland had won the right to host the 2014 World Champs.

Former Golden Shears president Greg Herrick was also elected as chairman of the Golden Shears World Council.


There will be live feed from the www.goldenshears.co.nz and free images from www.pete.co.nz/press


ENDS


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