Bates, Jensen the stars as New Zealand clinch low-scoring thriller

New Zealand Women 108 for 4 (Bates 54, A Kerr 21, Fraser 1-13) beat West Indies Women 107 for 5 (Knight 42, Jensen 3-24, Carson 2-12) by six wickets

Hayley Jensen‘s three wicket-haul and Suzie Bates‘ half-century helped New Zealand beat West Indies by six wickets on the penultimate ball of a low-scoring second T20I at North Sound and level the five-match series 1-1.

After putting West Indies in, New Zealand restricted them to 107 for 5 with Kyshona Knight top-scoring with a 48-ball 42. Seamer Jensen struck in the fourth over of the innings, removing captain Hayley Matthews for a 13-ball 8. Offspinner Eden Carson, playing only her third T20I, then removed opener Aaliyah Alleyne for 13 in the ninth over, and also accounted for Chedean Nation later.

West Indies struggled to bat freely and only Chinelle Henry’s 24 off 22 took them past a three-figure total. Henry and Knight were dismissed in the last over of the innings, bowled by Jensen as she finished with 3 for 24, bowling 17 dots in her four overs.

West Indies were able to keep New Zealand quiet for the first ten overs, when the visitors scored just 41 for the loss of Sophie Devine, who had an off day, scoring a 20-ball eight. But Bates anchored the chase with her 54 off 61 balls, which included six fours. She and Amelia Kerr added 52 in 49 balls for the second wicket before Bates was bowled by Shakera Selman in the 17th over.

In the next over, Cherry-Ann Fraser dismissed Kerr for a 25-ball 21, and Maddy Green was run out. With 17 needed from 12 balls, New Zealand took ten off the 19th over, thanks to a four by Georgia Plimmer.

It came down to five required from four balls, with Fraser bowling, but Plimmer and Lauren Down wrapped up the game with a ball to spare.

The third T20I will be held on Sunday at the same venue.

(With Inputs from ESPN)

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