Agassi to visit Christchurch with speaking tour

MATT RICHENS
Last updated 05:00 22/12/2012
Andre Agassi
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CHRISTCHURCH BOUND: Andre Agassi pictured with wife Steffi Graf.

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Andre Agassi is keen to immerse himself in Maori culture but is unlikely to go as far as taking home a tribal tattoo.

Agassi, a former World No 1 tennis player and one of the world's most famous sportsmen, will head to Christchurch next month and said "tourism" would be on his agenda.

Agassi , 42, will speak at An Evening With Andre Agassi at the Addington Raceway and Events Centre on January 23, but has a couple of days allocated to explore the city.

It is the eight-time major winner's second visit to New Zealand, but he said from his Las Vegas home yesterday that this would not be a repeat of his 2009 adventure holiday, when heliboarding in Queenstown was a highlight.

"I'm an interested person," Agassi said. "You can always get to my heart through my stomach, as you can with many others, but for me I'm fascinated with knowledge of the natives.

"I'm interested in their perspectives, their evolution, their education, their museums - the things that really speak to their history."

What about a tattoo?

"I don't think so. I'm not against tattoos; I'm just against committing to looking at the same thing every day," he said.

"That's a big commitment to make. Maybe if I put it somewhere I can't see it."

Agassi is married to fellow tennis star Steffi Graf and the pair have two children, son Jaden Gil and daughter Jaz Elle, but said his family would remain in the United States.

Tickets can be bought through the Duco Events website.

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