New Zealand's Road to Rio: 25 July - 1 August

Emotional welcomes for New Zealand athletes in Rio

With just five days to go till the opening ceremony, the New Zealand Olympic team continues to pour into Rio – with 130 athletes now at home in the athletes’ village.

As has become custom when New Zealand Team members arrive into the Olympic village, the gifting of a unique pounamu pendant, haka, and an official induction takes place and sets the scene for what lies ahead.

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One of the most spirited welcomes has been for the New Zealand women’s rugby sevens team, making their first appearance at an Olympic Games, who responded with a powerful and emotion-charged haka.

 

Clever Fox has perfect Olympic dress rehearsal

New Zealand golfer Ryan Fox has set up his Olympics quest with a stunning victory at the Northern Ireland Open.

Fox equalled the Galgorm Castle Golf Club course record with a nine-under 62 on the final day of the European Challenge Tour event today.

His total of 19 under secured a four-shot victory from overnight leader, South African Dylan Frittelli, and was thrilled to take strong form into his Olympic campaign, where he will play alongside fellow Kiwi Danny Lee.  

 

NZ Footballers send message with win over South Africa

The New Zealand women's football team sent their Olympic rivals a rousing message when they beat South Africa, 4-1, in an Olympic Games lead-up test at Luso Brasileiro Stadium in Rio.

The New Zealand team went into the match fully aware that their first Olympic opponent on Wednesday, the United States, beat South Africa 1-0 earlier this month.

It was a crucial bonding experience for the team too, and signalled 100 international caps for Kirsty Yallop and 50 for Rebekah Stott.

 

Adams’ coach hamstrung by knee injury

Valerie Adams will be without her coach Jean Pierre Egger when she defends her Olympic title in Rio after he suffered a knee injury in a fall.

Egger has now undergone surgery on the knee, but the rehab and risks associated with travel have meant he won’t be able to go to Rio. Adams will have her long-time physio, former New Zealand hockey international Lou Johnson, accompany her to the Olympic Games.

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Adams has been working with Egger at his home in Switzerland over the past few weeks, and says she is happy with good form she has built up.

 

Kids of Mangueira share soccer skills with NZ team

New Zealand has kicked off its Olympic social outreach partnership with the women’s soccer side the first group of Kiwi athletes to visit Rio’s Mangueira community.

Joined by Chef de Mission Rob Waddell, the players joined in with local kids and young community leaders performing capoeira - a traditional Brazilian martial art – and shared in soccer skills and drill sessions.

The New Zealand team is scheduled to make around six visits to the favela to inspire both the athletes and the local community over the next three weeks.  Team sponsors have helped to provide bikes, clothing and rowing machines to the underprivileged local community.

 

Barbara Kendall takes Olympic flame closer to Rio

New Zealand’s “Rainbow Girl” and IOC member Barbara Kendall has helped continue the Olympic flame’s eventful journey through the suburbs of Brazil.

The triple Olympic medallist and boardsailing legend was swamped by an excited crowd yesterday as she ran with the torch through the town of Cachoeiras de Macacu, an hour-and-a-half north of Rio.

The torch relay through Brazil began in early May and hasn't been without hiccups – with a motorbike crashing into a security officer, several attempts made to extinguish the flame, and even someone trying to steal it.

Rio 2016 Olympic Summer Games Barbara Kendall Ryan Fox Valerie Adams Football Golf
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