World champion shot-putter Tom Walsh has captured his 10th straight national title at the new Nga Puna Wai stadium in Christchurch.
Early in this competitive build-up towards defending his world outdoor title, the Timaru athlete popped the 7.26kg orb out 21.70m to defeat Kiwi rival Jacko Gill by nearly a metre in grim conditions.
Their performances were season bests for both throwers, with Gill continuing his return from a debilitating heart condition and pectoral injury last year.
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Afterwards, Walsh had mixed feelings about the performance.
"Three of those throws were really good, three of them were really sh*t," he told Newshub.
"Those last two were really good - I couldn't really ask for much more in terms of having a crack. There's a little bit more distance there, for sure.
"In a week-and-a-half, I'll be in much better shape and I'll need to be in 22m shape to have a shot at getting a placing these days. Men's shot put has risen and they'll leave you behind, if you don't stay with the times."
Among other results on the opening day of the three-day championships, sprinter Zoe Hobbs sped the women's 100m in 11.61s, Edward Osei-Nketia took the men's title in 10.64s, while Portia Bing was well off her recent national 400m hurdles record, clocking 59.63s for victory.
Waikato's Kayla Goodwin broke the day's only national record, bouncing out to 12.74m in the U20 women's triple jump, while Hamish Kerr cleared 2.20m in the men's high jump.