Girl power hits the world stage

Central Leader - - SPORT - By LAUREN PRI­EST­LEY

A dozen budding base­ball play­ers are com­pet­ing at the worlds – and this year there’s a girl in their midst.

The New Zealand Un­der-13s are com­pet­ing in the Asia-Pa­cific Mid­dle East re­gion­als of the Lit­tle League Base­ball World Se­ries in the Philip­pines un­til July 6.

And Beth Tay­lor Reid is relishing the mo­ment. She is the only girl in the team and is ex­cited to play on the world stage.

The Cen­tral City Base­ball young­ster says she is used to com­pet­ing against boys as the only fe­male at the club.

‘‘This is an amaz­ing op­por­tu­nity to show girl power and that girls can do any­thing,’’ she says.

The win­ners of the Asia-Pa­cific Mid­dle East re­gion com­pe­ti­tion will go on to com­pete in the world se­ries fi­nal in Penn­syl­va­nia in Au­gust.

But to get there, the New Zealand team has to take the ti­tle in tem­per­a­tures above 35 de­grees Cel­sius.

To get them ready for the heat, coach Cola Yeh or­gan­ised a week-long train­ing camp in Tai­wan where they trained with the team from Chi­nese Taipei.

Dur­ing the Philip­pines tour­na­ment, a ‘‘sis­ter school’’ is sup­port­ing the New Zealand team. The Kiwi play­ers have taken school sup­plies and first aid gear to leave with their sis­ter school when the tour­na­ment is over.

The team will also be donat­ing their base­ball gear to the school and giv­ing them 10 per cent of the money they have raised dur­ing the com­pe­ti­tion.

right: The One­hunga High School girls rugby team is on a stel­lar run this year. They are un­beaten in their com­pe­ti­tion and last week beat na­tional cham­pi­ons Feild­ing 42-14. Top ef­fort, be­low: Mt Al­bert Gram­mar School first XI mid­fielder Deven Jack­son races for the ball in last week’s match against Ep­som Girls. MAGS won the game 2-0, putting them at the top of the Auck­land Sec­ondary School Soc­cer ta­ble. Ref’s call, left: Ep­som’s Kathy Li, left, with fel­low St Cuth­berts’ stu­dents Ja­maica Vaughan, Sarah Cronin and Emma Beggs have just been awarded their Net­ball Um­pir­ing Cen­tre Badge.

Fly­ing solo: Cen­tral City Base­ball’s Beth Tay­lor Reid is the only girl com­pet­ing for New Zealand in the Lit­tle League Base­ball World Se­ries this month.

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