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  1. ITV Report

Harry and Meghan battle it out in welly-wanging competition

The Duchess of Sussex showed off her welly-wanging prowess with a deft underarm throw on the latest stop of their marathon royal tour.

Harry and Meghan and their respective teams sparred off in Redvale, north of Auckland, after planting trees and dedicating 20 hectares of forest to the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy (QCC) scheme.

They planted puriri and kowhai trees, the latter of which was represented on Meghan’s veil when she married Harry in St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle in May.

After meeting children from environmental education programme Trees for Survival, the couple then got their hands dirty to plant the trees before heading over to throw wellies – or gumboots.

The Duke of Sussex had a go at welly-wanging. Credit: PA

Harry and Meghan each had two children on their team and took it in turns throwing boots as other pupils cheered them on.

The duchess’s team emerged victorious after she landed her boot a good metre closer to the target than the duke.

Harry and Meghan, wearing black skinny J Crew jeans and a Karen Walker blazer, arrived on Tuesday morning after torrential rain showers at the paddock.

Nelson Poll, 11, was on Meghan’s team and said: “I think Harry’s technique was better – it was straight forward instead of going at an angle.

“I said to Meghan ‘try to keep it forward and not too high’.”

When asked who he felt wanted to win more, Nelson said: “Probably Harry.”

The Duchess of Sussex showed off her welly-wanging prowess. Credit: PA

Ryen Anderson, 10, who was also on Meghan’s team, added: “Meghan was asking us how to throw and we said it doesn’t matter.

“She didn’t know she could throw that far and she surprised herself.

“She was really pleased we’d won and said next time we’ll have to do another one and Harry said next time ‘we’ll win’!”

During the visit, the duke praised New Zealand for its commitment to the QCC – an initiative which promotes the conservation of forests.

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He said: “It is fitting that New Zealand’s contribution to the Canopy has been through its relationship with the QEII National Trust.

“The Trust was set up to mark the Queen’s Silver Jubilee in 1977. Since then, nearly four-and-a-half thousand covenants have been registered through the Trust.

“When you think that each of those covenants is enabling the protection of important areas of biodiversity on private land – that is a huge achievement and one that deserves recognition.

“And as I learned in the car there are no incentives; farmers are doing this because it’s the right thing to do.”

James Guild, chairman of the QEII trust, the equivalent of the UK’s National Trust and responsible for the QCC in New Zealand, gave a speech welcoming the couple and congratulating them on their forthcoming baby.

“Perhaps some time in the future we will see Her Majesty’s great-grandchild back in New Zealand to check up on the covenant dedicated by his or her parents on their first trip to New Zealand together.”

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex meet Prime Minster of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern as they arrive at a reception. Credit: PA

New Zealand has "a real affinity" with the royal family, the country’s prime minister said as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s visit drew to a close.

Speaking before a reception at the Auckland War Memorial Museum, Jacinda Ardern said the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have "both as a couple [have a] willingness to engage with all New Zealanders from all walks of life."

"But particularly standing up and using te reo Māori, speaking Māori at the beginning of speeches and at the end, that shows a level of respect for New Zealand that hasn't gone unnoticed here."

Ms Ardern said she had not shared any baby tips with Harry and Meghan - the PM gave birth to baby Neve in June - but added she admired the duchess for her work while pregnant.

She said: "It’s just increased my respect for the role that she’s playing at such an often tiring time."

New Zealand's Prime Minister added: "Having role models from around the world like herself just making statements about just Venus and equality, I think is very powerful."

When asked if the question of whether the Duke and Duchess’s visit has changed views on New Zealand becoming a republic, Ms Ardern said: "What you’ll pick up from the New Zealand public is that there is a real affinity for the Queen and a real strength of feeling around members of the royal family, particularly given, in the wake of some of our disasters, that they’ve been quick to respond and be present."