Timaru's young volleyball star Jesse Kempf has helped a New Zealand team defeat Australia and been picked as one of the tournament's best players.
The 18-year-old was named best backcourt player of the Trans-Tasman Quadrangular Secondary Schools Competition, held in Christchurch last week.
Kempf played in the 12-man South Island team which beat the North Island, Queensland and New South Wales in pool play before losing to the North Island 2-3 in the final.
"We were actually up 2-0 but ... they shut down our attacking play."
Kempf was then selected to play in a New Zealand representative team against competitors from New South Wales and Queensland.
The New Zealand side, made up of players from the North and South Island,won 3-0.
"[It was] one of the best sporting experiences I've had," said Kempf.
"You get to play against all the best guys from Aussie and New Zealand. The competition is better than anything I've been up against before."
Kempf said the representative team practised for just one hour together before the match and performed a haka, which he described as "a pretty cool experience".
Kempf, who is in his final year at Timaru Boys' High School, played libero throughout the tournament, a specialist backcourt position with an important defensive role.
Kempf will now focus on training for the National Club Volleyball Championship in August.
- © Fairfax NZ News