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Walsh loses bag but builds self-belief

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 18/05/2016

Kiwi shot putter Tom Walsh has returned from Shanghai's Diamond League meeting minus his backpack and a stolen trophy, but with a growing sense of self-belief.

Walsh finished second in Shanghai, his sixth-round effort of 21.20m beaten only by Kurt Roberts's winning 21.40m.

It was the 24-year-old Kiwi's first outing since winning the world indoor championship crown in Oregon in March with a best of 21.78m.

Returning to his training base in Phoenix, Arizona, Walsh had his backpack stolen at Los Angeles airport, although he said the thief would have been disappointed with the haul.

"All I had inside was an old pair of throwing shoes, some smelly undies, smelly socks, a smelly singlet, a pair of sunglasses, the trophy I won in Shanghai and the gift table mats from the same meet," he said in his latest blog.

"They're all items I can live without!"

Walsh says his world indoor win, backed up by silver in Shanghai, has given him more confidence as he builds towards the Rio Olympics later this year.

"I know what I need to put in place technically to produce those long throws, something which I managed to successfully put into practice in my opening Diamond League meet."

Walsh will train alongside top US shot putters Ryan Whiting, Jordan Clarke and former world champion Reese Hoffa in Arizona before travelling to his next competition - the Prefontaine Classic in Oregon on May 29.

From there, Walsh will be based in Athens, Georgia through to Rio, although he has two more Diamond League meetings in Stockholm and London before the Olympics.

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