Dewar in New Zealand team
South Canterbury Athletics Club decathlete Hamish Dewar is set to represent New Zealand for the first time.
The 17-year-old Timaru Boys' High School student will compete at the Oceania Games in Rarotonga in June.
Dewar will only compete in eight disciplines rather than the usual 10, with the decision made to make it an octathlon, as pole vault and discus have been dropped for the event.
He will, however, compete in the individual discus.
In the decathlon Dewar's best score is 5365 points.
The talented all-rounder said discus was his favourite event while the long jump was growing on him.
Dewar had been competing in decathlons for just over 18 months after he and his friend Tom Cooper decided to have a go.
He has however been competing in athletics since he was 9.
"My coach laughs but I actually started as a middle distance runner."
Dewar said he was looking forward to the opportunity to represent his country for the first time but it was a step into the unknown as far as his opposition went.
Three officials from South Canterbury, Reg Brockett, Helen Mackle and Kathryn Fraser, will also attend the Cook Islands event.
The small South Canterbury club is punching above its weight with Jonathon Lord named in the Athletics New Zealand team selected to compete in the IAAF World Race Walking Cup in China on May 3 and 4.
Lord will walk the junior mens' 10km with Jared Free, with Quentin Rew named for the open 50km.
Five club members have also been included in Athletics New Zealand High Performance latest squads.
The fifth edition of the "Performance Potential Squad" has 55 athletes nationwide including seven para athletes for the first time.
The idea is to support athletes and their personal coach in a partnership supported through national workshops or attendance at event group camps.
In the top squad, with Olympic potential are Lauren Bruce for throws, with coach Ian Baird, hurdler James Sandilands with Grant Lord and sprinter Jacob Matson with Don Garland.
Pleasant Point's Leanna Ryan has made the gold squad with her coach Criss Strange while Timaru Harrier Club's distance runner Amelia Morgan and her coach Maria Hassan are in the silver squad.
The Timaru Herald