GREG Searle is course for another world rowing title after helping the Great Britain eights into the final in New Zealand.

The Marlow rower who returned to the sport after ten years in retirement last won a world championship title in 1993, a year after winning Olympic gold.

He said: "To become a world champion again would be phenomenal.

"It would be ahead of anything I expected this early on when I came back into the sport.

"I would be so proud if I'm able to do that and so happy to be able to do it with such a good bunch of people."

Seale's crew booked their place in Sunday's final by winning their heat on Lake Karapiro ahead of Australia.

Searle, 38, said: "It was a really good step for us to put together everything we've trained for, everything we've been working on.

"To go out and win your heat, you can't look for much more than that so I'm pretty happy."

Meanwhile, Zac Purchase and Mark Hunter, from Marlow and Wycombe respectively, will contest Friday's lightweight doubles final after beating world champions New Zealand in their semi-final.

Purchase said: "We knew we had to race them sometime this regatta and it was good to get them in the semi-finals and set out our stall."

It was a welcome return to form for Purchase and Hunter, who won Olympic gold in 2008 but then didn't race together for more than a year as Purchase contracted a virus and Hunter went to America.

They also endured a traumatic start to the world championships as their race on Monday had to be abandoned half way through due to high winds and swells.

The Bucks pair were leading at the time.

Katherine Grainger is also through to the finals. She and Anna Watkins won their women's double scull at the start of the week.