Athletics NZ’s MIQ dilemma set to slash team for world indoor championships – Stuff.co.nz

Matthias Hangst/Getty Images

Tom Walsh will aim for a hat-trick of gold medals at the world indoor championships in Belgrade in March.

MIQ requirements look set to decimate the New Zealand team for athletics’ world indoor championships in Belgrade in March – with two-time shot put champion Tom Walsh the only certainty to pull on the black singlet for the event.

Athletics NZ’s acting high performance chief Scott Newman confirmed to the Star-Times that problems getting athletes back into New Zealand after the championships (March 18-20 in Belgrade) created major difficulties around selecting a team.

“We haven’t firmed up what we’re going to do,” said Newman. “None of our people at this stage have got confirmed MIQ spots, and getting back is difficult. It’s really hard to send a team away if you don’t have MIQ, and we can’t afford to keep people offshore for an amount of time.”

Newman said there was a “small allocation” of monthly spots through Sport NZ and athletics would enter that application process, though there were “no guarantees” of success there.

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“We’re subject to the same MIQ requirements as everyone else. At this stage the only one guaranteed to go is Tom Walsh. If there’s still quarantine in place he’ll go into the US and base himself there for the year, and won’t come back to New Zealand until post the European season.

“He’s the only one who has the capacity to do that. We do have several other athletes who are interested in going, but unless we can get MIQ spots secured they won’t be able to go.”

As well as Walsh, shot put exponents Jacko Gill, Dame Valerie Adams and rising young star Maddison-Lee Wesche (sixth in Tokyo) have also qualified, and high jumper Hamish Kerr looks likely to receive an invite. US-based middle-distance athletes Geordie Beamish and Nick Willis are also potential attendees, and would not be subject to the same MIQ issues.

Matthias Schrader/AP

Kiwi shot put exponent Maddison-Lee Wesche has qualified, but may be unable to attend the world indoor champs.

Newman said a decision would have to be made over the next couple of weeks, but was relaxed about the prospect of a bare-bones team lining up in Belgrade.

“In a year where we’ve got world champs (July 15-24 in Eugene, Oregon) and them Commonwealth Games (July 28-Aiug 8 in Birmingham), it’s not absolutely vital. If you were putting your money on where the really important events are this year, it’s definitely world champs, then Commonwealth Games, and world indoors …….

Source: https://www.stuff.co.nz/sport/other-sports/300506655/athletics-nzs-miq-dilemma-set-to-slash-team-for-world-indoor-championships

Matthias Hangst/Getty Images

Tom Walsh will aim for a hat-trick of gold medals at the world indoor championships in Belgrade in March.

MIQ requirements look set to decimate the New Zealand team for athletics’ world indoor championships in Belgrade in March – with two-time shot put champion Tom Walsh the only certainty to pull on the black singlet for the event.

Athletics NZ’s acting high performance chief Scott Newman confirmed to the Star-Times that problems getting athletes back into New Zealan…….

Matthias Hangst/Getty Images

Tom Walsh will aim for a hat-trick of gold medals at the world indoor championships in Belgrade in March.

MIQ requirements look set to decimate the New Zealand team for athletics’ world indoor championships in Belgrade in March – with two-time shot put champion Tom Walsh the only certainty to pull on the black singlet for the event.

Athletics NZ’s acting high performance chief Scott Newman confirmed to the Star-Times that problems getting athletes back into New Zealan…….

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