Lucky day for win­ning a fi­nals place Joseph keen to com­pete

CHB Mail - - Farm Focus -

Aworld-rank­ing squash player has joined the race to be the next FMG Young Farmer of the Year.

Joseph Watts, 27, has se­cured a spot in the East Coast Re­gional Fi­nal af­ter win­ning a qual­i­fy­ing event in Taka­pau last month.

“It was a lucky day for me and a big sur­prise to take out first place,” said Joseph who’s a tech­ni­cal field rep for PGG Wright­son.

Com­peti­tors spent the day tack­ling a range of mod­ules test­ing their prac­ti­cal and the­o­ret­i­cal skills.

They had to weigh and drench cat­tle, weigh and mar­ket a line of lambs, use a trac­tor to stack pal­lets and con­duct an au­topsy on a sheep.

“I signed up to learn some new skills. I’m new to the pri­mary in­dus­tries, so the more skills I can pick up the bet­ter,” he said.

Joseph has a Bach­e­lor of Sport and Ex­er­cise Sci­ence and a Grad­u­ate Diploma in Ru­ral Stud­ies from Massey Uni­ver­sity.

The Tikokino Young Farm­ers mem­ber joined PGG Wright­son in 2016 and started his new role four months ago.

Joseph rep­re­sented New Zealand in squash be­tween 2008 and 2013, achiev­ing a world rank­ing of 169.

“I re­ally en­joy the phys­i­cal as­pect of play­ing squash. The sport took me to Aus­tralia and around New Zealand, which was ex­cit­ing,” he said.

Joseph will be joined at the East Coast Re­gional Fi­nal in Dan­nevirke by Robert Barry, Jonathon Green and Alice Speedy.

The four fi­nal­ists will be de­cided on Novem­ber 10. They face off in the East Coast Re­gional fi­nal of Young Farmer of the Year in April.

Joseph Watts, ready to com­pete in fi­nals.

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