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SBD Global/December 20, 2012/Olympics
Australia, New Zealand Mimic U.K. With Major Olympic Funding Increase
Published December 20, 2012
INDIVIDUAL FUNDING: In Wellington, New Zealand, Simon Plumb reported "fundamental change hit New Zealand sport" on Tuesday, "with the Crown embracing both athlete-specific and non-Olympic funding into its key investment document." The most recent four-year funding announcement for elite New Zealand sports "has seen six individuals identified as public funding recipients beside big-player national organisations such as Olympic cornerstones Rowing New Zealand and Yachting New Zealand." World No. 1 amateur golfer Lydia Ko, who this year became the youngest winner of a professional Tour event, "has helped smash the mould in being guaranteed NZ$230,000 ($192,000) in public funding split over the next two years." The only individual from a non-Olympic sport to receive funding is a top surfer, Paige Hareb -- "and while it is considerably less than Ko financially, Hareb's non-Olympic status means philosophically, it's far more significant." High Performance Sport NZ CEO Alex Baumann said that he was "pleased to be able to help proven, individual athletes." Baumann said, "It's important, but we have to take these on a case by case basis" (DOMINION POST, 12/19).
A WOMAN'S WORLD: The APNZ reported the New Zealand national women's football team, the Football Ferns, "will benefit from a NZ$1.6M ($1.3M) cash injection over the next two years. HPSNZ congratulated New Zealand Football on its "improved performance across the recently completed cycle and performance" at the London Olympics, with funding of NZ$800,000 ($670,000) per year for next year and '14. The country's national men's basketball team, the Tall Blacks, "have missed out on funding from HPSNZ next year" (APNZ, 12/18).