Lanning’s record ton delivers series win for Australia | Cricket

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Australia women 273 for 5 (Lanning 104*, Mooney 69, Huddleston 3-44) beat New Zealand women 270 for 9 (Priest 77, Martin 77, Jonassen 3-47, Gardner 3-56) by five wickets
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File photo – Meg Lanning hit her tenth ODI century © Getty Images and Cricket Australia

Australia captain Meg Lanning struck a record tenth century, the most in women’s ODIs, to lead her side to a five-wicket win over New Zealand on Sunday, helping them claim the series 2-1 and maintain their 18-year hold on the Rose Bowl Trophy.

Lanning, who surpassed Charlotte Edwards to top the list for most centuries in women’s ODIs in only her 57th match, struck an unbeaten 104 off 116 balls to help her side chase down 271 with four balls to spare.

Lanning, who struck seven fours and a six, capitalised on a reprieve from New Zealand in the 22nd over after replays suggested that Rachel Priest had fumbled a stumping off the bowling of legspinner Amelia Kerr. Lanning went on to bring up her half-century off 62 deliveries and brought up her century off 111 balls in 48th over, with the win in sight.

“It’s obviously nice [to get the record] but I’m more glad that we got the win, to be honest,” Lanning said after the match. “I had a pretty quiet series so I felt it was time to contribute and lead the side home. I was keen to finish it off well and we needed someone to bat long and deep and I put my hand up to do that. It was nice to be able to get there at the end but I thought Mooney helped the top there, Villani and Blackwell certainly made it a lot easy for me to display my natural game.”

The Australia captain was well-supported by opener Beth Mooney, who scored a 73-ball 69 and shared a 93-run second-wicket partnership. Mooney, who had scores of 100 and 57 in the first two ODIs, was hardly deterred by the early loss of her opening partner, Nicole Bolton, as she played an aggressive innings, striking nine fours and racing to a half-century off 47 balls.

Mooney’s run-out in the 20th over brought Ellyse Perry out to bat for her first innings since January 2017 – having returned to the side after a hamstring injury during the Women’s Big Bash League, Perry did not come out to bat in the second ODI after injuring her elbow. Perry, however, was dismissed for 1 by New Zealand medium-pacer Holly Huddleston, who also dismissed Bolton and Elyse Villani to finish with 3 for 44, the best returns for her side in the game.

Once Villani fell for 37 off 42 balls, having helped Lanning bring the chase under control, Alex Blackwell (32) and Alyssa Healy (21) stepped up in supporting roles and helped seal the win.

Earlier, having been put in to bat, New Zealand began with a 60-run opening partnership before Suzie Bates was dismissed by Amanda-Jade Wellington in the 11th over for 27. Rachel Priest and Katey Martin, who both struck 77, then strung a 97-run partnership for the third wicket, before Martin added another 60 for the fourth wicket with Katie Perkins to take New Zealand to 230. Martin’s 86-ball knock included ten fours but her dismissal triggered a slump in the end overs, which saw New Zealand lose six wickets for 38 runs.

Spinners Jess Jonassen and Ashleigh Gardner took five of the six wickets to fall in this period as New Zealand finished their innings on 270 for 9. Gardner took 3 for 56, while Jonassen had returns of 3 for 47.

Australia won the Rose Bowl for the 23rd time since the inception of the competition in February 1985. New Zealand have won it three times. Sunday’s game was the 100th between the two sides in the competition.

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