A Marton schoolgirl is thriving on the rugby field against the bigger, stronger boys she faces.
Huntley School's Jamie Thompson isn't afraid to get physical and dirty, playing the crucial No 8 role for the school's first XV side.
Jamie said she doesn't get treated any differently for being the only girl in the side or by the opposition on game days.
"I just chuck some headgear on and they don't even know until the end when I take it off and we are shaking hands," Jamie said.
Headmaster Sam Edwards said Jamie is the second girl to play for the school's first XV since Huntley began accepting girls in 2014, after Chloe Henderson who is now at Feilding High School.
If there were any doubts whether she could hang with the boys on the pitch, they were quickly quashed in the first game of the season.
In their opening prep match against prolific Wellington school Scots College, she bagged a hat-trick and kicked five out of six conversions, quickly confirming she was right where she belonged.
"She came onto the scene and put a line in the sand pretty quick," Edwards said.
"She's a blockbusting number 8. It's not like she's a girl playing rugby on the wing, she is in the engine room."
Jamie has been boarding at Huntley School since Year 6 and is an avid hunter when she has the time. She has played rugby in the winter since the age of 5 and plays "anything" in the summer.
Edwards said she is a natural at just about anything she tries.
"Jamie can pretty much play any sport she puts her mind to. She was the star in the cricket team, she does clay bird shooting, one of the best shots in the school."
First XV coach Andrew Reynolds-Rowe said there was no doubt about having her in the side, she was a very determined character and had thrived this season.
"She thrives on the challenge of taking on the opposition physically, whether that be boys or girls.
"Traditionally, there's a lot of sceptics out there who don't think girls should be playing rugby and Jamie is willing to prove them wrong. The fact that she's doing it in a crucial position is really exciting.
"She's one to watch definitely. I certainly think at this age she has shown all the qualities to go far in rugby if she puts her mind to it."
A win this weekend over Marist will lock Huntley into a spot in the semi-finals, where they hope to avenge their loss to Taihape a couple of weeks ago.