Amelia Kerr's stunning batting performance in Dublin today is sure to lead to a reassessment of her future direction in the game.

Kerr's rise to prominence as a teenage prodigy rested, at least in the public domain, on her clever leg spin. Batting, from the outside, seemed a sidebar.

But not to the Tawa College schoolgirl, whose first love in cricket was, and is, her batting.

Not even her warmest admirers would have foreseen 232 not out against the hapless Irish coming. Opening the batting in a notable promotion up the order, it set up a 305-run belting, locked in a 3-0 series sweep and left her the leading performer in the series with bat and ball.


Read more: Kerr had a snooze after smashing world record 232

Her ODI batting average has zoomed to 67.66 and having taken 36 wickets in 20 matches at 18.3 apiece has laid the platform for what promises to be a stellar career.

Back at school, from which she's taken a break for New Zealand's tour to Ireland and England, to be followed by a stint with the Southern Vipers in English women's cricket's T20 competition, you'd imagine they'd have considered taking a day off, or at least renaming June 14, Amelia Kerr Day from hereon.

Kerr's start in cricket was playing with the boys. She got a dispensation from College Sport Wellington to play in Tawa's first XI, the sole female given that release.

"That was the best practice for me growing up," she said.

17 Year Old Amelia Kerr celebrated her stunning world batting record by having a snooze in the middle of the White Ferns match against Ireland.

Cricket is in her blood, and remembers playing the game from about six.

Her grandfather Bruce Murray was a test opening batsman for New Zealand in 13 tests from 1968-71 (on one memorable occasion in India, Murray, fielding at third man, had a banana lobbed in his direction; he picked it up and ran towards the middle to let the umpires know.

The bowler didn't see him waving his arms, bowled the ball and the batsman top edged it to short third man where Murray, running in, clutched the catch, greeting his teammates with ball in one hand, banana in the other); Dad Robbie Kerr played first-class and one-day cricket for Wellington through the 1990s; Mum Jo represented Wellington in the late 1980s.


"The biggest thing for me was I always wanted to represent my country in a sport," she said.

Batting came first in her mind, but bowling success was the first eye-catching aspect of her cricket.

"I grew up always doing both, but loved batting more. Definitely in the future with the White Ferns I'd love to be an allrounder and bat in the top four. That will take time, because we have an established top four, but that's for the future."

After today it might not take as long as that.

"It's pretty surreal," she said today. "The day couldn't go any better. I can't really believe what happened."

She had been unaware of the record, could hear ground announcements about them over the loudspeakers but couldn't hear what they were because of the clapping.

She had "a wee nap" after her innings, then picked up the ball and ensured it really was her day.

New Zealand's Amelia Kerr after she broke the world record for the highest women's ODI score. Photo / Photosport
New Zealand's Amelia Kerr after she broke the world record for the highest women's ODI score. Photo / Photosport

Kerr, who first played for Wellington at 14, grew up with a range of sporting pursuits, notably football and athletics. Indeed she admitted football was her first sporting passion when she was young, "but I got injured quite a lot so I ended up quitting, and because I was busy with my cricket."

Blessed with a strong work ethic, Kerr has had help from a range of coaches.

Well-known Wellington coach Ivan Tissera and Christie van Dyk, husband of former Silver Fern star Irene, and White Ferns batting coach Matthew Bell have spent plenty of time honing her game.

Back to school, so to speak. Kerr will be away about three months because she has a T20 contract with the Southern Vipers after New Zealand's tour. She would not have taken it without the schools' permission, combined with a confidence on both parties that with her work ethic firmly instilled, she will still pass her NCEA level three.

She fancies being a school teacher in the years ahead. Her sister is following that path. It might take her a little longer, given her sporting distractions.

At the Southampton-based Vipers, Kerr will team up with New Zealand captain Suzie Bates, an unabashed admirer.

"I'm very excited, and I'm glad Suzie's going to be there," Kerr said.

"She's an awesome leader to have in the team and I'm sure it will be a good experience."

It is a mutual appreciation society with Bates.

"She's one of the most mature 17 year olds I've met. She has a really good head on her shoulders, nothing seems to faze her, she's got the skill level and she just takes it all in her stride," Bates said.

There'll be those who will maintain 'it's only Ireland', That's hardly Kerr's fault but there's no doubt she has cleared her throat in the most emphatic manner to re-emphasise there is a new star in the women's game. The cricket world truly is her oyster.

* Amelia Kerr's 232 not out against Ireland today is the highest ODI score in women's international cricket.
* It broke a record set by Australian Belinda Clark against Denmark in 1997 — three years before Kerr was born. It is also the third highest ODI score by anyone, behind only India's Rohit Sharma (264 against Sri Lanka in 2014) and New Zealand's Martin Guptill (237 not out against the West Indies in 2015).
* The 17-year-old from Wellington also took five for 17, her career-best figures, in the 305-run win in Dublin.
* Kerr finished the three-match series as the highest scorer, with 342 runs at a strike rate of 156.88, and the highest wicket-taker with eight wickets to be named Player of the Series.