Watch: 'We're really excited to get home!' Blair Tuke hoping for big Kiwi welcome after Volvo Ocean Race leg

Kiwi sailor Blair Tuke has some added motivation heading into the sixth leg of the Volvo Ocean Race as the finish line happens to bring him home to Kiwi shores.

Tuke's team Mapfre along with the rest of the Volvo Ocean Race fleet set sail from Hong Kong yesterday to begin the challenging leg - a 6,100 nautical miles adventure that takes crews across the South China Sea and into the Pacific Ocean.

But Tuke says overcoming the challenging will taste that little bit sweeter if there's a warm Kiwi welcome to greet them in Auckland at the end.

"Myself and all the other Kiwis in the race are really excited to get home," he said.

"As we come in to the Hauraki Gulf, looking forward to seeing as many boats as we can and a big welcome for whichever one of these boats come in first."

In the first 16 hours of racing, Tuke's America's Cup teammate Peter Burling and his crew on Team Brunel currently hold the lead, with Mapfre sitting third.


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Kiwis optimistic as Commonwealth Games squash side named

Two world championship winning pairs will represent NZ on the Gold Coast this year. Source: 1 NEWS

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'It's the pinnacle for us' – Kiwi squash star Joelle King beams after Commonwealth Games selection

Kiwi squash star Joelle King is thrilled at her selection as part of New Zealand's seven-strong contingent for this year's Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast.

Currently ranked ninth in the world, King, 29, is off to her third Commonwealth Games, having won gold and silver in the doubles and mixed doubles respectively at Delhi 2010, whilst also bringing home a singles bronze at Glasgow 2014.

Speaking to 1 NEWS via Skype, King was jubilant at the chance to add more Commonwealth Games medals to her collection.

"It's always an absolute honour to be in the Commonwealth Games team," she said.

"It's the pinnacle for us squash players to be involved in such an event."

"I guess it's showing my age now, (Games) number three for me!"

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

King is one of NZ's seven-strong squash side to compete on the Gold Coast this year. Source: 1 NEWS