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Wellington's Bachelor of the Year?

ANDREA O'NEIL
Last updated 11:13 28/02/2013
James Sharp
Fairfax NZ
MODEL MALE: James Sharp's buff body, adventurous hobbies and kitchen prowess earned him a spot in two calendars this year.

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For a man whose face and impressive abs grace two calendars this year, James Sharp is surprisingly shy about having his photo taken.

The Brooklyn firefighter, 28, is Mr August in the 2013 New Zealand Firefighters' Calendar and Mr April in the Cleo magazine calendar, which is also running a "Bachelor of the Year" competition between its calendar models.

Despite being camera-shy, Mr Sharp thrives on a challenge, so he had a crack at firefighters' calendar shoot.

Cleo saw the resulting photo and asked him to be one of its most eligible bachelors.

"I sort of mulled over it and I thought, 'why not?'," Mr Sharp said. "I guess I feel quite reserved about having my photo taken, it's not really me. But at the same time it's a challenge."

The winner will land himself a slew of prizes and contracts, but Mr Sharp said other calendar boys were far ahead of him in the voting - contenders include Titanium boy-band member Jordi Webber.

He said his grandmother was his biggest fan, and that his supporters included his Tawa Central League football team- mates, although they teased him mercilessly.

"My football team definitely don't let me forget it."

Whoever Cleo readers choose, Mr Sharp is as eligible as they come - he is sporty and adventurous, counting among his hobbies skydiving, heliskiing and diving. He has just been accepted into the Fire Service's Urban Search and Rescue squad.

He is also a demon in the kitchen, regularly knocking up bread, pizza and baking from scratch and cooking for his colleagues at Hutt Valley fire station. There's only one thing stopping Mr Sharp being Wellington's most eligible bachelor - his girlfriend, Gemma van Baal.

"Gemma's pretty good about it all," he said.

To vote for James visit facebook.com/CLEOmagNZ.

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