December 26 - Rebecca Hayman (pictured), the sister of former All Black Carl Hayman, moved closer to the London Paralympics when she broke the New Zealand shot put record.
The 24-year-old from Dunedin beat her own record in the F 55 class by six centimetres with a put of 5.79 metres during a interclub meeting at the Caledonian Ground.
Hayman is paralysed from the waist down as the result of a car accident in 2006.
Hayman broke the New Zealand record with her first put and then had a consistent series of throws of 5.72m, 5.36m, 5.40m, 5.69m and 5.46m.
Her next target is to reach 6.29m to qualify for the London Paralympics in 2012.
Hayman broke her second New Zealand record of the day when she threw the javelin 12.13m on her fourth throw.
It beat her old record by 56 centimetres.
Her only other legal throw of 11.59m also beat the old record.
Hayman's coach, Raelene Bates, she has the potential to represent New Zealand in the throwing events at the Paralympics in London in 2012.
Parasport events are being added to the Commonwealth Games programme in New Delhi next year and Hayman could also make that team.
Hayman dabbled in athletics when she was a pupil at Otago Girls High School but this is the first time she has taken the sport seriously.
She said: "It's good fun.
"But it's not too hard.
"I just have to keep the frame in the correct position to get the best out of my throwing technique."
Hayman has made impressive progress early in her athletics career to suggest to Bates that she could become a Paralympic athlete.
He said: "It is part of my long-term goals to get to that level.
"But there is still a lot of hard work to go.
"I will just have to keep chipping away."
She is already putting in training either five or six days a week, building up her strength and perfecting the throwing techniques.
Bates said: "Rebecca has a huge potential but she is new to the sport at the moment.
"She still has a lot of power in her body and just needs the confidence to know that she can succeed."
Hayman works as a liaison officer for accident victims at the spinal unit of Burwood Hospital, in Christchurch.
Hayman was a Dunedin dive instructor and promising rugby player when she was injured in the crash in April 2006.
She played rugby for seven years and played at representative level for Otago Spirit and for the South Island schoolgirls team.
Southland's Jessica Hamill, 19, who finished 11th in the shot put and seventh in the discus at the Beijing Paralympics last year, qualified for next year's Commonwealth Games with a put of 7.08m.
It came on her sixth and last put.
She also passed the mark with her fourth throw of 7.06m.
Hamill, who was competing in the F 34 cerebral palsy class, had a consistent series of puts with 7.01m, 6.91m, 6.96m, 7.06, 6.82m and 7.08m.