New Zealand v Australia, Rose Bowl, 4th ODI, Hamilton February 8, 2009

Ebsary and Poulton level series for Australia

Cricinfo staff

Australia 307 for 4 (Ebsary 86, Poulton 81, Nitschke 58) beat New Zealand 263 (Satterthwaite 67, Sampson 3-34) by 44 runs

Leah Poulton, the New South Wales batsman, scored 81 from 97 balls to put Australia in a perfect position © Getty Images

Australia levelled the Rose Bowl Series after four matches when their third-highest total in history ensured a satisfying 44-run victory in Hamilton. Lauren Ebsary, Leah Poulton and Shelley Nitschke fired with half-centuries in Australia's 307 for 4 before the hosts lost too many wickets to mount a serious challenge.

The final match is in Wellington on Thursday and Australia, who came back from a 2-0 deficit, will enter the contest with renewed confidence following their outstanding form over the past two games. "Scoring 300 is something that we've been working towards as a team since the India series late last year," the captain Karen Rolton said. "We made some good scores in that series, but it's been fantastic to build on that and reach that goal. We've got to make sure now that we keep this form going on Thursday."

Nitschke, who cruised to 58, and Poulton combined for an opening stand of 121 at almost a run a ball to lay the platform for a huge total. Poulton hit 11 fours and departed with 81 off 97 while Ebsary almost stayed till the end in bringing up an aggressive 86 from 76. Beth McNeill was the only multiple wicket-taker with 2 for 52 after picking up Ebsary and Alex Blackwell (37).

Amy Satterthwaite top scored for New Zealand with 67 and there were useful contributions from Nicola Browne (45) and Sara Tsukigawa (45), but the task was too heavy and they finished at 263. The 570 runs scored were the most in any of the previous 679 one-day internationals. Emma Sampson finished off the match two overs early and collected 3 for 34 while Lisa Sthalekar gained two important breakthroughs to disrupt the chase.