Australia 2 for 129 (Haynes 40 *, Healy 33) beat New Zealand 128 (Satterthwaite 30, Kimmince 3-21, Wareham 3-26) with 8 goals
Combinations 0 for 43 for Jess Jonassen and Megan Schutt, meanwhile Ellyse Perry continuing his rehabilitation on the edge of the border, only allowing Australia to show their incredible bowling depth as New Zealand were beaten for the second time in as many days to succumb to the T20I series at Allan Border Field.
Delissa Kimmince, Georgia Wareham and Sophie Molineux all shone in exploiting the oddity of the slow and sometimes sharp turning surfaces in Brisbane to gather the visitors for 128, before Alyssa Healy and Beth Mooney adding 51 quickly to leave a comfortable equation Rachael Haynes and Meg Lanning to complete.
New Zealand is once again at the wrong end of several marginal decisions, Amy Satterthwaite given bewilderment by a millimeter when he was just getting ready to hurt Australia, but overall the gulf between the two sides was enormous. Australia has now won 10 consecutive bilateral T20I series against all comers, and would be very grateful to have closed this match without the huge contributions of three of the most experienced bowling players.
Turns to the original problem
The already used surface and the prospect of assistance for the sluggish player means Sophie Devine shows little hesitation in hitting first after winning the pitch. Lanning responded well by giving Jonassen the first, from which he conceded five. But after Schutt scored 11 goals in the second set, Lanning adjusted to pick up speed and brought Molineux, Ash Garnder and then Wareham into attack.
Molineux flopped at ideal distance fast enough to get Devine back with his first ball, and with the sixth he swerved away to beat Maddie Green. It was a kind of momentum to swing, and above the next Green was exhausted trying to force a second round – a replay that showed he failed to swing his wand over the line in a dive desperate for safety. So from the first few promising overs, New Zealand is already starting to falter.
Phone calls to Australia again
For the second time in days, Australia has been given a lot of help by their close calls. First, Satterthwaite was ejected from Wareham’s bowling, just as he seemed to be in a position to accelerate. There are several millimeters in the question of whether Satterthwaite has swung his foot back towards the crease or not, and a deliberation time of nearly five minutes for third referee Donavan Koch shows more than enough doubt to rule in New Zealand’s favor. Even so, the red light finally came on.
Then, when Wareham and Molineux have spun their net even further, Lauren Down tries to swing the ball at the foot and is awarded after ball, bearings, and maybe a mixed up bat or gloves. Both Wareham and Healy – who seemed more interested in stumping – appealed with any conviction, but the finger was once again raised. Overall, the turns combined for a 5 to 74 of 13 overs, well supported by Kimmince and Nicola Carey’s stitch variations.
Strong players set the pace
At best, New Zealand needed neat repeat overs early in the first game if they were to press Australia into a scenario where the visitors could win. In contrast, Healy and Mooney realized an opportunity to take the initiative and stepped in almost before Devine or his bowlers could do much about it. Mooney, out cheap on Saturday, found some well-timed drives against fresh balls, before Healy launched himself at Suzie Bates to break 22 from one over.
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This streak meant that the hosts could line up past 50 within 4.1 overs, which meant that no matter what happened next, pace would never be a problem. So while Healy and Mooney crashed relatively soon after the milestone passed, the experienced pair Lanning and Haynes had plenty of time to organize themselves before relaunching.
Haynes, Lanning’s sweep operation
Sixty-five was needed from 75 balls when Haynes joined Lanning, which meant that a quiet union would likely be more than enough. Australian No.3 and 4 were actually able to absorb some tight bowling before accelerating incrementally, doing so in a way that allowed the target to be pulled in with enough 20 balls remaining.
Within two days, every member of Australia’s top five has contributed at least one score, making a truly terrifying combination against New Zealand or any opponent. All of this with Perry watching from the sidelines – it seems there is absolutely no need to rush back from the hamstring injury that forced Australia to win the T20 World Cup without him earlier this year.