Dame Valerie Adams included in NZ athletics' Commonwealth Games squad

Kiwi shot putter Dame Valerie Adams has been conditionally included in New Zealand's athletics squad for this year's Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast, headlining a 15-strong team for the April games.

Adams, 34, is looking to create history at the games, targeting an unprecedented fourth consecutive Commonwealth Games gold medal.

However, Adams' inclusion is provisional, having given birth to daughter Kimoana in October, she will need to first compete at the New Zealand National Championships.

Veteran 1500m runner Nick Willis is another notable inclusion, in what will be his fourth games.

World shot put champion Tom Walsh will be looking to go one better than his silver medal from Glasgow 2014, looking to bring his 2017 form into the new year.

Olympic pole vault bronze medallist Eliza McCartney has also been named, after an injury plagued 2017 that saw her struggle with an Achilles tendon issue.

"This is an extremely strong and exciting team and one which we have very high hopes for on the Gold Coast," said New Zealand Olympic Comittee CEO Kereyn Smith.

"There's a fantastic mixture of athletes and disciplines within this group, ranging from the likes of seasoned campaigners Dame Valerie Adams and Nick Willis to Games debutants such as Cameron French and Brad Mathas. We're also naming three pole vaulters which is a fantastic representation of the growth of this sport within New Zealand."

"New Zealand has won a staggering 127 athletics medals at the Commonwealth Games and I look forward to these athletes adding to our proud athletics legacy on the Gold Coast."

NZ Team:

Shot put: Valerie Adams (conditional), Tom Walsh
20km race walk: Alana Barber, Quentin Rew
10,000m: Camille Buscomb
Pole vault: Eliza McCartney, Olivia McTaggart, Nick Southgate
400m hurdles: Cameron French
Discus: Marshall Hall (provisional)
Javelin: Ben Langton Burnell
800m: Brad Mathas, Angie Petty
1500m: Nick Willis
Hammer: Julia Ratcliffe (conditional)

Watch FULL LIVE COVERAGE of the 21st Commonwealth Games free-to-air on TVNZ from April 4, 2018.

New Zealand's Valerie Adams competes in the Women's Shot Put Qualifying Round
New Zealand's Valerie Adams competes in the Women's Shot Put Qualifying Round Source: Associated Press

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