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Athletics NZ Name Team For 2022 World Athletics Championships

An initial team of 18 athletes have been named by Athletics New Zealand to compete at the 2022 World Athletics Championships in Eugene, Oregon 15-24 July.

The team features an exciting blend of experienced top-class performers and a wave of emerging athletes, many of whom could be set for their World Championship debuts in the Black Singlet.

Seven athletes led by shot put ace Tom Walsh, the 2017 world champion and 2019 World Championships bronze medallist, have achieved the entry standard during the Athletics NZ qualification period and joining Tom on the plane for Oregon are fellow shot putter Jacko Gill, Tokyo Olympic finalists Julia Ratcliffe (hammer) and Maddi Wesche (shot) plus sprint ace Zoe Hobbs, who will be set for a second World Championship appearance having competed at the 2019 Doha edition. Geordie Beamish (5000m) and Lauren Bruce (hammer) have also been selected and will make their World Championship debuts.

Eleven further athletes are conditionally selected subject to remaining eligible to be entered. This includes World Indoor bronze medallist Hamish Kerr, who has not met the World Championship entry standard but meets the selection criteria based on his top 12 performance at the Tokyo Olympic Games and a high world ranking.

Ten athletes have earned conditional selection based on their world ranking within the 2022 World Championship qualification system known as the Road to Oregon.

Among the conditionally selected athletes include 400m hurdler Portia Bing, who could be set for her third World Championship appearance after making her debut as a heptathlete at the 2015 edition. New Zealand 100m champion Eddie Osei-Nketia would be set for a second World Championship appearance while conditionally selected athletes set to make their World Championship debut are women’s pole vault duo; Olivia McTaggart and Imogen Ayris, New Zealand javelin record-holder Tori Peeters and hammer thrower Nicole Bradley, who could join Ratcliffe and Bruce in providing a full complement of women’s hammer throwers. Other conditionally selected athletes include national senior women’s high jump champion Keeley O’Hagan, men’s 800m duo; Brad Mathas and James Preston and New Zealand women’s 200m champion Georgia Hulls.

At the end of the qualification period on 26 June, based on target numbers for each event, World Athletics will determine the number of athletes with an entry standard, eligible wild cards and universality places. Any remaining places within an event’s target number will then be allocated to athletes based on world rankings.

A final selection announcement will take place on 1 July, where additions to the team are possible, and confirmation of the above conditions will be known.

Tom Walsh, who will be making his fourth World Championship appearance in Oregon, said: “As always it is special time to be named in a Black Singlet team. A lot has changed since my first world champs back in Beijing in 2015, but the goal remains the same, do everything I can to be in shape to win, which means being able to throw 23m plus.”

Oceania hammer record-holder Lauren Bruce, who has been based in Australia over the past couple of months where she trains with her coach Dale Stevenson, added: “It gives me great excitement and pride to be selected for my first World Championships team, especially with it being held in Eugene, Oregon aka Tracktown. Hayward Field has held a spot on my bucket list of places to compete around the world for a number of years, so I feel privileged I will get to do that whilst representing New Zealand.”

Athletics NZ Team Leader for the 2022 World Championships Kat Austin added: “After two Covid disrupted years as Kiwis we are really excited to be back regularly competing overseas in what is a huge year of major international competition. The World Championships is one of our key pinnacle competitions, a huge test but also a massive opportunity. I can’t wait to see how the team performs at Hayward Field – one of the world’s most iconic track venues.”

 

Athletes selected for the 2022 World Championships in Oregon

Via Entry Standard

Women

Lauren Bruce (hammer)

Zoe Hobbs (100m)

Julia Ratcliffe (hammer)

Maddi Wesche (shot)

Men

Geordie Beamish (5000m)

Jacko Gill (shot)

Tom Walsh (shot)

 

Athletes Conditionally Selected

Women

Imogen Ayris (pole vault)

Portia Bing (400m hurdles)

Nicole Bradley (hammer)

Georgia Hulls (200m)

Olivia McTaggart (pole vault)

Keeley O’Hagan (high jump)

Tori Peeters (javelin)

Men

Hamish Kerr (high jump)

Brad Mathas (800m)

Eddie Osei-Nketia (100m)

James Preston (800m)

 

ENDS

 

If you would like to interview Tom Walsh, Lauren Bruce or Olivia McTaggart could you please contact Steve Landells on 021 849 099 or email stevel@athletics.org.nz to check in around time zone considerations.

Credit Alisha Lovrich for the attached images of Tom Walsh and Lauren Bruce.

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