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Page last updated at 12:11 GMT, Wednesday, 6 May 2009 13:11 UK

Vili ponders nationality switch

Olympic shot put champion Valerie Vili
Vili won New Zealand's first Olympic track and field gold medal since 1976

Olympic shot put champion Valerie Vili could switch nationality from New Zealand to Great Britain before defending her title at the 2012 Games.

Vili, whose father was born in Bristol, has said that funding reasons may be a factor in her decision.

The 6ft 5in Kiwi, who has already turned down approaches, said: "More could be done for elite athletes in New Zealand.

"We won three golds in 2008, but the funding still isn't that flash."

She added: "If I lived elsewhere and competed for another country things might be different, but I love the country and love competing for New Zealand. However, I have to look to the future and live my own life.

"My father's English, so I have a connection with another country and have options. I have had offers, but have turned them down."

see also
Kiwi Vili claims gold in shot put
16 Aug 08 |  Athletics

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