Rotorua's Cameron Ingram is cricket mad and appears to have a bright future in the sport.

The 17-year-old Western Heights High School student already has a cricketing CV to rival many senior players and he recently received the Geyser Community Foundation's Karen and Greg Hunt Scholarship to complete two New Zealand Cricket coaching badges, and further his leadership in cricket.

Last season Cameron was named the Geyser Western Heights High School cricket team's Young Player of the Year and made his first appearances for Central Indians in the Baywide Premier competition. He has also played for the Northern Districts Under-19 and Lakelands representative sides. He is now a regular in the Central Indians line-up and has cemented a place as an opener.

He said he was speechless and "really grateful" when he found out he would receive the scholarship.

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"The application had to be based on going towards a leadership course and I chose cricket coaching. That will hopefully progress to me getting a job or career in coaching, or something to do with cricket.

"I've always been keen on cricket and sport in general, I just love being outdoors. It's just being out there with your mates and being competitive, that's what pushes me. I'm always eager for a challenge and trying to make the top teams.

"I like seeing improvement in other people as well. I currently help coach the Western Heights second XI and I'm helping out Rotorua Cricket with the Year 2-4 age groups, just on the basics of cricket."

He started playing when he was 4, in his older brother Sean's Kiwi Cricket team. The pair are equally competitive and have honed their skills in the backyard throughout the years.

He said the step up to the Baywide premier competition was a big one, but he was finding his feet.

"I didn't start off too great last season, but I made big improvements towards the end and I was batting well. I've carried that on this season and started pretty well.

"It's just nice to get out there and know that you're playing against the top guys in the Bay. You improve just from being around those guys and Central have really pushed me.

Cameron Ingram (right) batting with Central Indians teammate Ryan Neves earlier this year. Photo / File
Cameron Ingram (right) batting with Central Indians teammate Ryan Neves earlier this year. Photo / File

"Definitely last year, I got heaps of guidance and that's where the improvement came from. I've been training a lot over winter, I've always rated myself as a batsman and I've worked hard in the nets facing the quick bowlers to improve and make the most of the opportunity to open the batting.

"Any time batting out in the middle is a highlight. I've had a few good starts, but I haven't had any big scores. The next goal is to kick on and get some bigger scores."

He plays for Central Indians in the premier grade because they are the only Rotorua-based side, but when it comes to reserve grade he is Geyser Western Heights High School through and through.

The Geyser City Cricket Club was recently named Club of the Year at the Bay of Plenty Sports Awards. Cameron is a prime example of the benefits on offer through the club reinventing itself and working with the schools.

"I think it's pretty awesome to be honest. I knew most of my mates would come to Geyser eventually, but having the JPC and Western Heights teams have helped a lot. It just makes it a bit more comfortable when they come to Geyser trainings and easier to move up.

"We have school trainings on Tuesdays and Wednesdays - on Wednesdays some of the boys stay afterwards for Geyser training. It's a good pathway."

Cameron will sit his New Zealand coaching badges next year.