Hamish Kerr ©Getty Images

  2017 Summer Universiade, Taipei and 2019 Summer Universiade, Naples: men's high jump.

Competing at the Summer Universiade has propelled many an athlete to continental and global success, and such has been the case for New Zealand high jumper Hamish Kerr - even though he did not reach the podium on either of his two appearances.

The native of Dunedin had just turned 21 when he competed in the 2017 edition in Taipei, and an effort of 2.10 metres in qualifying was only enough to earn him 13th place - with the top 12 progressing to a final in which Germany's Falk Wendrich won on countback from Italy's Marco Fassinotti after both had cleared 2.29m.

By the time Kerr returned to the flagship competition of the International University Sports Federation in Naples two years later, he was a far more experienced and accomplished performer.

A month earlier he had equalled the national record of 2.30m in winning the Oceania title at Townsville in Queensland.

But after qualifying for the final with a clearance of 2.15m, there was frustration for the Kiwi as he was unable to register a height and finished officially with a DNF.

There was further disappointment for him later in the year as he failed to qualify for the final at the Doha World Championships after a best effort of 2.22m.

On the other side of the COVID-19 pandemic, however, Kerr re-grouped in a big way, and in February 2021 he became outright national record holder with a clearance of 2.31m in Wellington.

Later that same year he appeared at the postponed Tokyo 2020 Olympics and competed with honour, finishing tenth with a clearance of 2.30m.

Kerr had further global success in 2022 as he earned bronze at the World Indoor Championships in Belgrade as he surpassed the 39-year-old New Zealand indoor record of 2.16m, set by Roger Te Puni, with a clearance of 2.31m, sharing third place with Italy's Olympic champion Gianmarco Tamberi.

The summer of 2022 proved even more fruitful as he won the Commonwealth title in Birmingham with a clearance of 2.25m. 

And in February 2023, at Banska Bystrica in Slovakia, Kerr took another giant leap in his career as he broke the Oceania indoor record set by Australia's Tim Forsyth in 1997 as he managed an outright lifetime best - so far - of 2.34m.