21 Aug 2008

Walker says Willis used unorthodox approach

5:47 am on 21 August 2008

The 1976 Olympic 1500 metres champion John Walker says Nick Willis's achievement in winning the bronze medal in the event in Beijing has been done in an unorthodox way.

Willis has credited his brother Steve, among others, for helping him become New Zealand's first medallist in the event for 32 years.

Steve Willis gave up work for a year to help Nick with his build-up to Beijing and Walker says having a family member helping out is a rare thing in the sport.

Walker says the only other example he can think of is Sebastian Coe.

The British double Olympic gold medallist worked with his father, but Walker says it's unusual to have a successful working relationship with a family member.