Labour leader Andrew Little has directed some Muhammad Ali-style trash talk at a Herald writer before a much-anticipated ping-pong showdown.
Steve Braunias is approaching party leaders and challenging them to a game of table tennis, followed by an interview, as part of a pre-election series.
After dispatching an unfit Act leader David Seymour, Braunias now has the Labour leader in his sights.
Little has already conducted a pre-election television interview while lifting weights at the gym and donned his exercise gear again to film a video message to Braunias.
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"So, Steve Braunias, ping pong on Saturday, huh? Well, listen, Sunshine, I've been working out, I've been practising," Little says, as dramatic music builds and slow-motion shots of him serving and returning shots flash on screen.
"You use your pen like a sword, you do what you can - but, brother, I'm telling you, I get a ping pong paddle in my hands, ain't nothing stopping me."
Braunias has returned serve.
"I gather he was trying to be all scary like Michael Myers from Halloween. I prefer Jason from Friday the 13th. That's the kind of nightmare I'm going to give the Labour leader ... he'll be begging for mercy. None will be shown."
Not all party leaders have been as keen as Little. Last month Gareth Morgan declined the challenge, emailing Braunias to say he was too busy leading his newly-formed The Opportunities Party and focusing on issues that matter to New Zealanders.
Braunias told Morgan his series was more about the character of party leaders: "What I have established from our brief correspondence is that you're a chicken".
Morgan then published the correspondence. He remains chicken.