St Margaret’s College wins NZC Outstanding Female Engagement Award 2024

At St Margaret’s College we don’t like cricket – we love it! 

With over one hundred girls now proudly participating in the game at various levels, SMC has been announced winner of the New Zealand Cricket (NZC) Outstanding Female Engagement Award for 2024. 

Diana Patchett, Executive Principal, commented: 

“This award, deservedly presented to cricket convenor and champion Amanda Hardy, reflects a strong and growing cricket culture amongst our girls, supported by our staff and our White Fern SMC Old Girls. We are incredibly proud that well over 90% of our girls participate in sport, and of our staff like Amanda who create opportunities for our students to discover their passions.”

NZC commended the wide range of cricket opportunities available at the College, from involvement in the senior teams (1st, 2nd & 3rd XI), an Intermediate Year 7-8 team, and a dedicated Year 5-6 team. Additionally a strong group of junior girls (Year 0-4) eagerly participate in weekly Smash Play sessions alongside their older cricketing sisters.

This season, the growth of the Intermediate Programme has enabled SMC to enter a Division 2 (U16) team into the local club Saturday competition. It’s also seen the introduction of the tradition of capping our 1st XI players – most recently Lily Young, Ciara Hartland and Maya Young, who were capped by NZC President Lesley Murdoch.

Other recent highlights are wins against Craighead, Rangi Ruru, and Columba at the summer QUAD tournament; a win at the annual Willows fixture against Otago Girls High School by 16 runs to retain the Satterthwaite/Bates Trophy; and the selection of Year 10 players Sophie Gibb and Lexie Boon into a South Island U15 Invitational Cricket team traveling to Dubai to participate in the R66t Dubai Cup. Amanda Hardy has been selected as the team’s manager, and they will be coached by former White Fern Kirsty Bond.

The College is fortunate to draw on the support of its Old Girls for its cricket programme, including White Ferns Amy Satterthwaite and Maia Lewis, and Hannah and Lizzy Rae, Amiee Brown and Niamh McKenzie and Jayde Read who have represented Canterbury. 

Cricket at SMC offers our girls the opportunity for new experiences, to acquire fresh skills, and to engage in teamwork with their peers, all while forming lasting friendships. On presenting the Female Engagement Award at the televised awards ceremony, NZC noted that SMC can take pride in their progress guiding girls as they cultivate their love for the game and discover future pathways in playing, officiating, or administrative roles, following in the footsteps of our alumnae.