Amber excels with bat

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North Otago schoolgirl cricketer Amber Cunningham has an appetite for hitting sixes.

She cleared the rope four times at the tournament including three in one match against Auckland, with only six sixes and 11 fours hit at the tournament

At the recent national under-15 tournament in Wanganui representing Otago, she faced Northern Districts, Central Districts, Canterbury, Wellington and Auckland and was one of the team’s top batters.

She produced a couple of handy knocks at the tournament and topscored against Auckland with 31. The Otago side finished fourth at the tournament.

Both games against Canterbury ended in wins and one of them was thanks to Amber with the talented 14-year-old hitting 18 runs off just six balls to help get the side over the line.

Cunningham, who has played cricket for about three years, was pleased with how she went in Wanganui.

“Yeah I’m pleased with how I played. I certainly did better than last year.”

The cricket was a step up to what Amber is used to.

“It’s really good cricket. Usually girls can only bat and not bowl, but teams like Auckland had girls which could do both and that made it hard for us.”

She plays her cricket in Oamaru for the Albion Cricket Club second grade team.

“The pitches were fantastic in Wanganui; they’re a bit more bowler friendly here,” she said.

Also a handy bowler and talented wicket keeper, Amber is eligible for the side again next year.

“Hopefully I make it again next year and improve on this year.”

She averaged 25.5 with a strike rate of 85.71 with 32 not out off just 25 balls against Canterbury, her top score at the tournament.

Amber’s mum Nicky was proud of her daughter.

“She did very well and we’re really pleased with how she went at the tournament.”

By Brayden Lindsay

PHOTO: Amber Cunningham produced some strong performances for the Otago under-15 schoolgirls cricket team which came fourth in a tournament in Wanganui.