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'Put the hard mahi in' - Tauranga triathlete Hayden Wilde targeting Olympic berth after stellar 2019

Tauranga-based triathlete Hayden Wilde has dominating the World Triathlon Series this year to put his hand up for the Tokyo Olympics.

Having been all over the world competing for the past six months, Wilde's not ready for a rest just yet.

In the space of a year, the 21-year-old has moved into the top 20 of the world rankings after consistently finishing in the top 10.

That rise was capped off by a third-placed finish at the recently completed Olympic test event in Tokyo, strengthening his case for a 2020 Olympic spot.

"I don't really want to make it look like it was a fluke this year," Wilde told 1 NEWS.

"I just want to carry on and put the hard mahi in, and get those treats aye."

"Already having the opportunity to potentially go to a games, I couldn't imagine it at all, and if I get there it'd just be unbelievable."

The New Zealand triathlon team heading to Tokyo will consist of just four spots, two male and two female. To make things more tricky, the IOC say athletes competing as an individual will also have to compete in the mixed team relay.

This will mean selectors have to choose between medals in individual, or mixed team events.

Wilde will be up against the fast-rising Sam Ward, double Olympian Ryan Sissons and former under-23 world champion, Taylor Reid.

Contenders will have until April next year to stake their claims for spots on the starting line in Tokyo.