The Southern Stars remained unbeaten at the ICC Women's World Cup with a dominant seven-wicket victory over New Zealand on Tuesday.
In-form opener Meg Lanning was the hero as she smashed a tremendous 112 and combined well with Jess Cameron (82) as the Stars chased down the Kiwis total of 6-227 with a little more than 11 overs to spare.
New Zealand entered the encounter on top of the group, but made a shocking start with the bat after being sent in by their Australian counterparts.
Megan Schutt (3-40) did the damage as the Kiwis slumped to 4-39 in the 13th over, but Katie Perkins and Suzie Bates got the innings back on track with a patient partnership of 103.
Perkins was run out by Schutt for a well compiled 41, but Bates remained at the crease and continued to pile on the runs.
Nicola Brown (39 not out) and Rachel Priest (14 not out) got in on the act, while Bates was the last batter dismissed for an excellent 102 that ensured the Stars had a competitive total to beat.
Their chase started poorly when Rachael Haynes was dismissed for five, but Lanning and Cameron got together to put on 182 at better than a run a ball to put the Stars close to victory.
Cameron and Lanning fell in quick succession, but experienced duoAlex Blackwell (14 not out) and Lisa Sthalekar (eight not out) combined to guide the Stars over the line.
The Stars qualify for the Super Sixes part of the tournament, with their first game of the next phase to take place on Friday against either England or India.
The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia
First Posted 05 February, 2013 9:40PM AEST