An unbeaten half-century from Suzie Bates has helped New Zealand register their first victory of the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup 2022 with a comfortable nine-wicket triumph over Bangladesh in a rain-affected clash at an overcast Dunedin on Monday.
Bates used all her experience and guile in a match that was reduced to 27 overs apiece, scoring 79 from just 68 deliveries to ensure the White Ferns chased down their opponents score of 140/8 with seven overs remaining.
It was New Zealand’s first win of the tournament and sees them rise to third on the standings behind India and South Africa, while Bangladesh remain winless from their two matches and in seventh.
Bates’ half-century was her 28th in ODIs and she also became just the sixth batter to score 1000 runs in Women’s World Cup matches when she found the boundary late in her innings.
The New Zealand opener received ample support from her teammates, with star all-rounder Amelia Kerr (47*) making up for a rare Sophie Devine (14) failure to ensure the hosts returned to winning ways.
Vice-captain Amy Satterthwaite was influential too, with the veteran all-rounder’s crucial spell of 3/25 from five overs ensuring Bangladesh could not build on the strong platform that was provided to them by openers Fargana Hoque (52) and Shamima Sultana (33).
The pair put on 50 without loss for the second consecutive occasion at the tournament and it wasn’t until Frances Mackay (1/24) intervened to make the initial breakthrough when the score was on 59.
Lea Tahuhu held on to a tough outfield chance to dismiss Sultana, before Satterthwaite was introduced into the attack and picked up two wickets in an over to help slow the run rate.
Hoque then fell run out after some clever work from Mackay in her follow through and the hosts picked up a handful of late wickets to ensure the required total was not too lofty.
Spinner Salma Khatun (1/34) bowled Devine to give Bangladesh some hope, but it was all in vain as Bates and Kerr guided the Kiwis home with ease.