Petting Zoo: World Sheep-Shearing Competition Kicks-off in New Zealand
BEING UNLOADED INTO A SPORTS STADIUM IN THE MIDDLE OF INVERCARGILL IS A BIT DIFFERENT FOR THESE SHEEP.
AND HAVING THE WORLD SHEARING AND WOOL HANDLING CHAMPIONSHIPS IN THE SOUTH ISLAND IS A BIG FIRST FOR THE KIWI SHEARING FRATERNITY.
Sir David Fagan, Former Shearing Champion "Never before have we had a venue with this with so much seating, so big with the facilities around it, the corporate boxes, it's pretty amazing".
NEW ZEALAND A FIRM FAVORITE IN MANY EVENTS... WHILE OTHERS LIKE JAPAN ARE STILL FINDING THEIR FEET IN THE SHEARING SCENE.
Shun Oishi, Japanese Shearer "No we have only ten thousand, fifteen thousand sheep, and yeah but we really love to shear them, so we started running shearing course".
THERE ARE SIX EVENT CATEGORIES, INCLUDING TRADITIONAL BLADE SHEARING AND WOOL HANDLING EVENTS BEING JUDGED.
SHEARERS WORKING ON A POINTS SYSTEM WHERE SPEED, WOOL QUALITY AND THE STATE OF THE SHEEP ONCE SHORN GOES TOWARDS A FINAL SCORE.
Huw Condron, Commentator "It's the lowest combination so it's the fastest cleanest shearer will come to the top at the end of the competition.
COMPETITORS WORK THROUGH A SERIES OF ROUNDS WITH HOPES OF MAKING THE FINALS HERE ON SATURDAY NIGHT. BUT ORGANIZERS ARE EXPECTING A BIG CROWD AND A PARTY LIKE ATHMOFPHERE
Huw Condron, Commentator "We got a good chance of blowing the roof off, so it's down to us as commentators to get the crowd going but I don't think that's going to be difficult at all to be honest".
ALL THE HARD WORK COMING FROM THE ATHLETES, AND THE 4 AND A HALF THOUSAND SHEEP, GETTING WHAT IS PROBABLY THE MOST UNUSUAL TRIM THEY'LL EXPERIENCE.
MARK HATHAWAY, ONE NEWS.