16-year-old wins Australian Junior Masters title

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If you've ever played a game of ten pin bowling, you'll know how hard it is to get a strike - let alone to beat your fellow competitors!

One 16-year-old girl from New South Wales has done just that - she bet Australia's junior bowlers to take out the Australian Junior Masters title for 2014.

Shanita Clark outplayed her rivals to win Australia's premier and highest nationwide bowling competition, which was held at Lidcombe in Sydney in April.

The competition is the finale of a two-week bowling extravaganza of bowling competitions, two of which Shanita also earned placings in. As published in the Daily Examiner, Shanita placed second in the Classic Cup and fifth in the President's Shield Interstate Cup as a representative of Northern NSW.

What makes Shanita's success even more incredible is the fact that she suffers from rheumatoid arthritis, which causes pain in the joints in various areas on her body.

Despite the condition, Shanita told the Daily Examiner she only had a little knee pain during the tournament, which had to be managed with a heat pack. Luckily, bowling is a low impact sport that aligns with her specialist's recommendations - proving that bowling really is a sport for everyone!

Across the tournament, Shanita had an average score of 177 per game. However, her best score for the season is 247 - that's pretty impressive! 

Shanita's aptitude for bowling could be in part due to a family talent. According to the Daily Examiner, her dad, Ashley Clark, has achieved ten perfect 300 scores in his ten pin career.

So what does Shanita have to say for those who are just starting out or want some bowling tips?

"I've learnt from Dad not to focus too much on the score," the Daily Examiner published. "There are always days when you're going to bowl a bad game. I don't get frustrated and just get my head in the zone as I approach."

If you're inspired by Shanita's achievement, one of the best places to start out is by joining a bowling league. Why not ask your local AMF bowling centre about how to join up?