Birmingham Commonwealth Games: Countdown begins for 233-strong New Zealand team

The countdown is on for a 233-strong NZ Commonwealth Games squad, as they touch down in Birmingham before the opening ceremony.

With just five days to go, there's plenty of buzz among the team boasting fresh faces and old heads.

Para-bowler Sue Curran will become New Zealand's oldest-ever athlete to compete at the Games, as she makes her third appearance at the event in pursuit of an elusive medal.

"I'm 75," Curran said. "I don't hide it, I'm proud of it, especially representing the country and with the NZ uniform on.

"We've had a fourth and a fifth, but this time, it's upwards."

Meanwhile, rhythmic gymnast Paris Chin admits she's feeling the nerves, as the 17-year-old highschooler prepares for her first major event.

"Once I get there, they'll be a bit more, but it's okay," she said. "I know everyone's probably feeling kind of the same as me.

"Having new experiences, getting to see people from lots of different sports and staying with a bunch of inspirational people from around NZ.

"If you don't achieve what you set out to do, aim for the next one and never give up and keep the goal going."

Five-time Games medallist and New Zealand chef de mission Nigel Avery can relate to Chin's emotions.

"Well, maybe Paris can teach Sue a fair bit too in the social media space," he said. "I think we can learn a lot from each other and part of it is mixing with athletes you don't normally mix with."

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