New Zealand v Australia, 5th Women's Twenty20

All-round Australia level series with close win

ESPNcricinfo staff

February 20, 2011

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Australia Women 166 for 9 (Poulton 50) beat New Zealand Women 163 for 7 (C Smith 3-23) by 3 runs

An all-round performance from Australia women carried them to a close three-run win over New Zealand women at Queen's Park in Invercargill. The win helped Australia draw the five-match series 2-2, after the first game was abandoned.

Australia decided bat and openers Meg Lanning and Leah Poulton started rapidly adding, 21 within the first three overs before Lanning was bowled by Sian Ruck. Poulton, however, looked in fine touch as she and Shelley Nitschke (13) put on 38 runs in quick time. Poulton hit three fours and three sixes in a 31-ball 50. She, was dismissed with the score on 96, but Alex Blackwell and Jess Cameron didn't let the momentum slip as the duo put on 23 in just over 3 overs to take Australia to 3 for 119. However Suzie Bates, struck in the 16th over to dismiss Blackwell and though Cameron and Rachel Haynes blasted 22 runs in one over, Australia lost their way as they stumbled from 3 for 119 to 9 for 166 off their allotted overs, with Bates picking up four wickets.

New Zealand started steadily and at 2 for 96 in the 13th over with Amy Satterthwaite and Sara McGlashan looking set, it looked like the chase was under control. However Nietschke dismissed Satterthwaite (40) in the 13th over, and McGlashan, who starred in New Zealand's win in the fourth Twenty20 game, fell in the next over for 31. Liz Perry and Nicola Browne steadied the innings with a 51-run partnership in 34 balls and once again it looked like New Zealand were back on track for a comfortable victory. Medium-pacer Clea Smith, who bowled, the final over, dismissed Brown off the second ball of the over. New Zealand needed seven runs off four balls, but Smith held her nerve as Sarah Tsukigawa fell on the fourth ball of the over, failing to score a run. Katey martin was run out off the final ball of the over as New Zealand fell four runs short of their target to hand Australia a series-levelling victory.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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