New Zealand

Surfing legend Kelly Slater to compete in NZ

Slater, 47, holds the record for being both the youngest and oldest World Championin the men's ranks.

He won his first world title in 1992 at the age of 20 and his last was in 2011.

The Piha Pro will be the first time Slater has competed in New Zealand since 1993.

The Piha Pro is one stop on the newly-announced WSL Challenger Series which will see more than 100 surfers chasing qualifying for the elite Championship Tour in 2021.

10 people accused over importing over a tonne of drugs into New Zealand

Up to five million dollars' worth of drugs was seized in a major operation targeting the importation of methamphetamine and other drugs into New Zealand.

A New Zealand man has allegedly been operating overseas since 2016, sending drugs to associates back here via multiple countries and using a variety of ways to conceal the drugs.

He was arrested at the border in Italy on February 2.

Police have also arrested six of his alleged associates living in New Zealand after search warrants were carried out throughout the wider Auckland region last week.

PNG in contact with remaining students in China

PNG High Commissioner to New Zealand, Francis Agwi, also said he was informed by the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs that no one at the isolation facility in Whangaparoa, including the 17 PNG students who were evacuated out of Wuhan by the New Zealand government, has shown any signs of infection, nor been tested positive for Novel Coronavirus.

The department also said Kundu Beijing is very much aware of the dire situation that other students are in, as prices of food, water, medical fees, electricity and masks have dramatically increased since the virus outbreak. 

New Zealand to help Pacific neighbours evacuate

New Zealand imposed a two-week travel ban on arrivals from and through China on Monday and also warns its citizens to leave China fast.

Australia, the United States and seven other countries including Fiji, Russia, Japan and Indonesia, have also imposed entry restrictions on people from China, in an effort to limit contagion of the coronavirus from its source in Wuhan.

New Zealand's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield said preparations for the evacuation were well under way.

New Zealand 'has responsibility to protect Pacific from coronavirus'

The death toll from the coronavirus sweeping through China has increased to 17 to six and more than 500 people are confirmed to have the illness, which began in Wuhan.

Health authorities say the current risk to New Zealand is low.

But Otago University's Michael Baker says the virus has already spread to several other countries, and monitoring and preparation has to be stepped up. 

He says the recent spread of the measles to the Pacific highlights the obligation New Zealand has to the region.

Australia claim series win

New Zealand wilted in the Melbourne heat at the MCG, where Australia wrapped up a crushing 247-run win on day four of the second Test on Sunday.

Blundell rallied for the Black Caps, celebrating his second Test hundred in three matches with a resilient 121 runs, but he had no support from his team-mates after Nathan Lyon (4-81) and James Pattinson (3-35) starred.

Marnus Labuschagne (1-11) ended Blundell's unforgettable innings late in the evening as Australia only required nine wickets to skittle New Zealand for 240 – Trent Boult not batting due to a fractured finger.

NZ defeat Great Britain 12-8

No tries were scored in the first half with the sides locked 2-2 at half time, but the Kiwis took charge after the break as Jamayne Isaako and Corey Harawira-Naera crossed over.

Daryl Clark replied late on, but Great Britain would fall short and suffer a second loss at the start of the 2019 tour, having lost to a Tonga Invitational XIII last weekend.

Changes to NZ border rules kick in today

Up to 1.7 million travellers from 60 countries who previously didn't need a visa will now be required to declare their passport details and any criminal history before they can travel.

The government has spent $5 million on a domestic and international marketing campaign to make sure people aren't stopped at the gates.

Board of Airline Representatives New Zealand executive director Justin Tighe-Umbers said about 4000 to 5000 travellers would need an Electronic Travel Authority (ETA) each day.

NZ declares war on coconut rhinoceros beetle in the Pacific

A new strain of the beetle, CRB-G, is resistant to traditional control methods, and the government said it could cause $US150 million dollars to be lost from the Pacific's coconut and palm oil industries every year.

CRB-G is established in Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands where it is damaging palm trees.

New Zealand is contributing about $US11 million dollars to the fight, some of which will go to science institute AgResearch.

Football Ferns striker Hannah Wilkinson completes Sporting Lisbon move

The 27-year-old has signed a one-year contract with Portuguese club Sporting Lisbon and said there are pictures of Ronaldo everywhere she turns.

"That was one thing that kind of gives me chills every time I step into the academy because in the meeting room it's just his face and pictures of him playing at the same place you're training in right now and how he developed through the ages at that very place," she said.