Tom Ashley, Moe el Moussawi, Howie Tamati

Olympic gold medallist Tom Ashley, New Zealand’s Mr Olympia Moe El Moussawi and rugby league legend Howie Tamati join award-winning sports entertainment show HYUNDAI CODE this Thursday September 4 at 8.30 PM (repeats Sunday September 7 at 4.00 PM).

Tom Ashley might have enjoyed a low profile before the Beijing Olympics, but he certainly doesn’t anymore. Ashley’s gold medal for men’s sailboarding – our first sailor to win at the Games since windsurfer Barbara Kendall 16 years ago – has instantly catapulted him to the status of national treasure. The signs were always good the Auckland-based windsurfer would make a good go of the big contest. He was the reigning world champion going into his event, and as a younger competitor won three titles at the Youth World Championship in 2002-03.

Mr Olympia kicks off next month, and for the first time in the history of the prestigious body-building contest, New Zealand will get to fly the flag. Moe El Moussawi, who moved to this country in 2002, is possibly in the best shape of his life going into the competition. His qualifying event – the 2008 Iron Man Pro Invitational – saw him finish a creditable third, one of the best placings of his career, and hopefully a sign of things to come.

Howie Tamati may have popped up in a triathlon field earlier this year, but it’s his life as a former Kiwi rugby league international – and one special game in particular – for which he’ll always be most famous. It was 1983 and Tamati’s team was playing the Australians at Brisbane’s Lang Park, after a hiding from the Kangaroos at Auckland’s Carlaw Park only weeks before. The New Zealanders played the game of their lives to beat their rivals 19-12, in a game so intense it is still regarded as one of our greatest victories of all time.

Voted Best Sports Programme at last year’s Air New Zealand Screen Awards, HYUNDAI CODE is an hour-long show – now in its fourth year – and filmed live in front of a studio audience at Maori Television’s Auckland headquarters. Tawera Nikau and Jenny-May Coffin are joined by Warriors’ Wairangi Koopu and the ‘Brofessionals’ – aka Glen Osborne (Oz) and Matua Parkinson (Mutz) – for more news, inside stories and off-camera action with Kiwi sports stars excelling at home and abroad.

Book your ringside seat for hard-case interviews and plenty of laughs with HYUNDAI CODE – screening on Maori Television this Thursday at 8.30 PM (repeats every Sunday at 4.00 PM).

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