Suzie Bates put together her 12th ODI century, becoming the first New Zealand batter, and fourth overall, to reach 5,000 runs in the format as the hosts defeated Pakistan by 71 runs to end an otherwise disappointing women’s World Cup campaign to close on a positive note on Saturday. After Bates’ stunning century led New Zealand to 265 for eight, a five-wicket first haul from medium-speed Hannah Rowe helped New Zealand secure a comfortable win at the Hagley Oval. Bates reached 126 of just 135 deliveries in the White Ferns’ total and that proved too much for Pakistan when Rowe picked up 5/55 to effectively seal the result for New Zealand.
However, the win is unlikely to help the Kiwis reach the semi-finals of the tournament, with New Zealand now requiring both England and India to post big losses on Sunday to stand any chance of sneaking in.
It means that the hosts of the tournament will most likely finish in sixth place in the standings, while Pakistan will finish in eighth place with one win out of their seven matches in the tournament.
New Zealand will wonder what could have been, especially after the way Bates played as she put together her fourth World Cup 100.
The New Zealand veteran hit 14 boundaries in her 135 ball innings as she put on her 5,000th ODI run for her country as she accelerated New Zealand’s healthy total on what was an excellent batting wicket.
Many of Bates’ fellow batters started, but Katey Martin (30 out), Brooke Holliday (29), Amelia Kerr (24) and Maddy Green (23) couldn’t match the performance of their more experienced teammate.
Nida Dar (3/39) was the Pakistani bowlers’ pick, taking two wickets in three deliveries early in her spell disrupting New Zealand’s highly regarded top order.
Dar was also the mainstay of Pakistan’s pursuit, with her amusing 50 stroke keeping her side in with a glimmer of hope to reach the victory target.
While Dar and skipper Bismah Maroof (38) were in the fold together, there was a golden opportunity, but New Zealand managed to pick up wickets at crucial stages to drain the prospects for Pakistan.
While spinner Frances Mackay (2/29) wreaked havoc at the top of the Pakistan chase, it was Rowe who sealed the match by dashing through their middle order in style.
Rowe left Maof to end an 82-run tie with Dar, then sent Aliya Riaz for one and took the key wicket from Dar to tumble Pakistan from 155/3 to 158/6.
That decisive spell proved enough as Pakistan’s last wickets fell tame to give New Zealand enough time to cruise home.
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