It's been touch-and-go whether the aunt who helped raise Nick Willis would get to see him run in London.

Wellingtonian Gill Willis had a nasty dose of flu and chose to stay off a flight earlier in the week out of consideration for other passengers.

On Thursday, she was still unsure whether she'd be able to make it to the Games at all. But by Friday, Gill and partner Bill decided they had to go. Air New Zealand found seats for them on a flight that left last night.

Gill said Nick's heat-winning performance on Saturday morning sealed the deal.

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"It would have been a bit of a difficult decision for us if he hadn't got through."

She praised her nephew's tactical nous in the race.

"It was such a mature race. He ran it with logic and cunning, and I really liked that," Gill said.

She and Bill will be in London for tomorrow's semifinals.