With over 50 caps for the All Whites (including 48 'A' internationals), Simon injects vital experience, and a dead ball threat, to a young Oly Whites midfield.
Juliette Haigh rounded out a stellar rowing career by teaming with Rebecca Scown to win the bronze medal in the women’s pair at the 2012 London Olympics.
For Haigh, it was a case of third time lucky. She’d been a finalist in the previous two Olympics, but come up short of a medal each time.
Rebecca Scown was born in Taranaki in 1983. She has a strong family background in sport – her brother Sam has played rep rugby for Wanganui, her uncle Alistair was an All Black forward and her cousin Sonia was an Olympic rower who married Rob Waddell.
Sturdily-built Craig Monk had a fine junior and youth career in sailing, winning the P class Tanner Cup and then the Starling nationals.
The Taranaki-born Monk then established himself as New Zealand’s pre-eminent Finn class sailor – he won the national title every year from 1989-96.
Alison Shanks had two strikes against her during her outstanding cycling career.
With Olympic silver and bronze medals plus a world title, Bevan Docherty has had a career any New Zealand athlete would be proud of. Yet the New Zealander, the country’s top triathlete for several years and one of the most respected competitors in the world, has strangely struggled for the recognition at home that his feats have warranted.
The New Zealand Sports Foundation and Rowing New Zealand had to work fast after the 2000 Sydney Olympics to hold on to expert rowing coach Dick Tonks.
There are many stories of New Zealanders who narrowly missed winning an Olympic medal. Perhaps none were unluckier than Christchurch shot put and discus expert Val Young, who could easily have won not one but three Olympic medals.
Gary Hurring had all the credentials to be a champion swimmer.
He is the son of Lincoln Hurring and Jean Stewart, who were world-class swimmers in the 1950s.
Pistol shooter Greg Yelavich has set some Commonwealth Games records that will take a power of beating. The Aucklander, born in Otahuhu in 1957, has represented New Zealand in seven Commonwealth Games and won a record 12 medals – 2 gold, 5 silver and 5 bronze. He won medals at six Games.