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Last Updated: Tuesday February 02 2010 07:51 GMT

Girl fights shark with body-board

Lydia from New Zealand

Girl fights shark with body-board

A teenager from New Zealand has saved herself from a shark attack by hitting the fish with her body-board.

Fourteen-year-old Lydia was playing in chest-high water with her brother when she noticed the 1.5m shark swimming next to her.

She said she wasn't sure what the shark was at first, but bashed it with her body-board to try and make it go away.

The shark managed to bite Laura's hip through her wet suit, before eventually swimming off.

The attack happened off Oreti beach on New Zealand's south island on Monday.

Experts reckon it was probably a broad-nosed seven gilled shark.

Short sharp hit

Laura said: "I wasn't quite sure what it was. But I looked towards my brother's face and he was just shocked.

"I looked at my side and just saw this massive grey thing...so, I just hit it with one short sharp hit of the boogie board."