July 27, 2018 / 3:10 AM / in 2 years

Hunger Games-inspired NZ archer selected for Youth Olympics

WELLINGTON (Reuters) - Rebecca Jones says she took up archery after watching the Hollywood hit franchise “The Hunger Games” so no doubt the New Zealander will be hoping the odds will always be in her favor when she competes at the Youth Olympics in October.

Jones, who will become New Zealand’s first archer at the Games being staged in Argentina, qualified after winning her age group in the Oceania youth championships in July.

She said she was inspired to take up the sport after watching Jennifer Lawrence play Katniss Everdeen, who relies on her skills with a bow to survive ‘The Hunger Games’ - a televised fight to the death in a dystopian future.

“I idolized Katniss Everdeen when I watched The Hunger Games,” Jones said in a New Zealand Olympic Committee statement.

“I wanted to shoot like her so I joined an archery club with my school friend and loved it more than I expected, right from the very beginning.

“Archery pushes both my body and my mind.”

The NZOC said they hoped the selection of the 16-year-old from Oxford, about 55 kilometers northwest of Christchurch in New Zealand’s South Island, would open the door to others in the sport to push for selection in the future.

“It’s fantastic to have Rebecca selected for this competition and we hope it will pave the way for further archers to attend in the future,” NZOC chief executive Kereyn Smith said.

“We look forward to watching Rebecca take on the best young athletes in the world in October.”

The 2018 Youth Olympic Games, which run from Oct. 6-18, will be the third edition of the event following Singapore in 2010 and Nanjing in 2014.

Reporting by Greg Stutchbury; Editing by Peter Rutherford

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