New Zealand's most enduringly successful shearer, David Fagan, begins his final competition today before retirement.
The New Zealand shearing and wool handling championships at Te Kuiti in the King Country will be the last for the 53-year old veteran before he retires from the circuit.
He has had a busy final season, racking up 12 open wins from 25 finals.
Doug Laing from Shearing Sports New Zealand said Fagan had the chance of several more titles before the week's end.
"He's in the running for three major titles, one of them of course being the New Zealand open title, which he's won 16 times in the past, but he's also up for the North Island shearer of the year; he's won that 17 times, also the New Zealand shears circuit."
Standing in Fagan's way is the current world and national open title holder, Rowland Smith, who is also in top form, Mr Laing said.
Mr Laing said Sheree Alabaster is favoured to take the national wool handling title for the seventh time, but would be up against Golden Shears champion, Joel Henare, and Keren Herbert - currently the country's top ranked wool handler.