He might be too young to go to the world championships this year - but shot put sensation Jacko Gill is already gaining world recognition.

He has been invited to compete in one of the rich Diamond League athletic meetings in Europe this year (and could go to more); US world shot put record holder and 1996 Olympic gold medallist Randy Barnes wants him to go to the US for special training; and athletics super agent Ray Flynn has already shown interest in the 16-year-old.

Though his youth prevents him from attending the world championships in Korea in August, Gill's phenomenal throw of 20.01m with the senior shot put has qualified him for the 2012 Olympics (although there are some suggestions he may have to do it again during the official qualifying period). His success has created strong ripples of interest through the world of track and field.

The Diamond League does not have the age restrictions of the world championships - and Gill has been invited to the meeting in Stockholm on July 29. There he will compete against 10 of the world's top shot putters; a further test of his competitive temperament.

"That will be a great thrill to meet up with the world's best. Pretty cool," he says.

Flynn, a contemporary of John Walker's and a world-class miler in his day, is now an agent based in the US and has shown interest in representing Gill.

World record holder Randy Barnes, also from the United States, has invited Gill to spend several days at his home in West Virginia after the Stockholm Diamond League meeting.

"Randy has a teenage second cousin who is showing a lot of promise in the shot event and wants me to train with him," Gill says. "Randy has been in touch with me by email several times already this year and I would like to take him up on the offer."

However, Gill has had a change of plans in his immediate schedule - and will now attempt to break the world junior record for the shot in Noumea on Tuesday. He had intended to repeat his 20m throw with the Olympic weight shot on Noumea but will now chase the world under-20 record of 22.73m with the lighter ball - a record currently held by German David Stohl.

"I was disappointed with my 21.34m performance in winning the New Zealand junior title in Dunedin a month back and know there is a lot more there," Gill said before leaving for Noumea early today."I had trained extremely well with the 6kg junior weight shot before our nationals but just didn't click on the day."

After that, Gill will bid to add the world youth (under-18) title to the world junior gold medal he won in Canada last year. The world youth championships are in Lille, France, in early July. Then he will move on to Stockholm and perhaps later to the US to train with Barnes and his cousin.

Gill has also received emails of congratulations from several of the top American shot putters this past week - including 2008 Olympian Adam Nelson and 1984 Olympic silver medalist Mike Carter.

Athletics New Zealand is pursuing a special dispensation for Gill to compete at the world championships in Daegu, Korea.

"We are asking for that because we think it is a special case," said Athletics NZ convenor of selectors, Graham O'Brien. "The world championships have not been around for that long in history and I don't think they have had too many people of this age on their radar as a thrower."

No matter what happens regarding Daegu, Gill says he has qualified for the London Olympics with his 20.01m throw last weekend and there will be no question about his elegibility to compete because of his age.

"I turn 18 on December 20 next year. Fortunately that's 11 days before the December 31 deadline."