NZ CWG contingent to have less than 200 athletes

Wellington: For the first time in 16 years, New Zealand`s Commonwealth Games contingent will feature less than 200 athletes when it lands in Delhi for the 19th edition of the quadrennial extravaganza.

The last time it happened was in the 1994 Victoria Games, which did not have hockey in its list of sports.

The naming of New Zealand`s table tennis, tennis and hockey teams brought the total number of competitors for the October 3 to 14 to 193, which is 56 less than the 249 in Melbourne four years ago.

At the 1998 Kuala Lumpur Games New Zealand had 217 athletes, while there were exactly 200 in the 2002 Manchester Games.

The team to New Delhi will be accompanied by 103 support staff, the `New Zealand Herald` reported.

New Zealand`s hockey teams (men and women) will have just one goalkeeper each. Coaches Shane McLeod and Mark Hager named their 16-player squads for Delhi.

"When you go to an FIH tournament like the World Cup or Champions Trophy teams take two keepers but more often than not the second goalkeeper is not involved when squads are trimmed to 16 on match day," said Hager.

"We felt that given the likely conditions in India we need the extra outfield player. Rotation is going to be key in the heat and we felt we needed the fifth field player on the bench," he added.

Among those selected is men`s team is Simon Child, who skipped the March World Cup in New Delhi due to security concerns.


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