Australia beat NZ by 141 runs


Wellington, March 13 : All-round brilliance from Ellyse Perry (68 and 1/18) and Darcie Brown’s three-wicket haul helped Australia beat hosts New Zealand by 141 runs in the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup match at the Basin Reserve here on Sunday. The 19-year-old Brown ripped through the New Zealand top-order to take Australia in a dominant position. The seamer dented New Zealand’s chase of 270, picking up three wickets including Suzie Bates (16) and Amelia Kerr (1). Beth Mooney demonstrated her athleticism at second slip as she dived to her right, fully stretched herself and took a low one-handed catch to send the dangerous Amelia back to the dressing room. Perry came from wide of the crease to remove New Zealand skipper and big-hitter Sophie Devine for 16. Tahlia McGrath, Amanda-Jade Wellington, Megan Schutt all joined the party and closed the doors for New Zealand to make a comeback. Towards the end, lone warrior Amy Satterthwaite (44) and Lea Tahuhu (23) added 35 runs before New Zealand folded for 128. Earlier, half-centuries from Perry (68) and McGrath (57), and a power-packed cameo straight out of isolation by Ashleigh Gardner (48 not out off 18 balls) lifted Australia to 269 for eight. Having won the toss and elected to bowl, New Zealand managed to contain their Trans-Tasman rivals Australia to 37 for one in the powerplay, with Alyssa Healy (15) holing out at deep midwicket off Frances Mackay. Hayley Jensen and Tahuhu further dented Australian innings as both skipper Meg Lanning (5) and her deputy Rachael Haynes (30) returned to dug out in quick succession. Perry along with Mooney steadied the Australian ship, adding crucial 57 runs together for the fourth wicket. Just when the partnership was swelling, Amelia got the much-needed breakthrough. Mooney (30) dragged one on off the leg-spinner, leaving Australia on 113 for four. McGrath joined Perry in the middle and the duo accelerated in the middle overs. The 101-run stand was broken thanks to Maddy Green’s brilliance in the field. Green jumped to her left from long on to complete a catch in front of the sight screen to dismiss Perry. Gardner, who missed the first two games due to Covid-19, made an instant impact on her return, smashing four maximums and as many boundaries. Brief scores: Australia 269/8 in 50 overs (Ellyse Perry 68, Tahlia McGrath 57, Ashleigh Gardner 48 not out; Lea Tahuhu 3/53) beat New Zealand 128/10 in 30.2 overs (Amy Satterthwaite 44, Lea Tahuhu 23; Darcie Brown 3/22, Ashleigh Gardner 2/15) by 141 runs.

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