Cricket World Rewind: #OnThisDay - Suzie Bates leads New Zealand to biggest ODI total of all time
June 8, 2018 - The pitch was flat, the outfield was lightning quick and the sun was shining. New Zealand had been in great form. Ireland, on the contrary, were missing many of their key bowlers.
New Zealand won the toss and thus began the onslaught. Suzie Bates came out to open the batting with debutant Jess Watkin. The two added 172 runs for the opening partnership off just 18.5 overs at a mind-blowing run rate of 9.13.
The stand ended when Watkin was dismissed for 62 off a brilliant one-handed catch at deep square leg. Bates then had another 100+ partnership with No 3 Maddy Green at around 10 RPO.
While Bates clubbed 151 off 94 deliveries, Green plundered 121 off 77 balls. This was the 10th ODI hundred of Suzie Bates, which came off only 71 deliveries. Young leg spin bowling all-rounder Amelia Kerr then cashed in on the brilliant start and raced to an unbeaten 81 off just 45 deliveries at a strike rate of 180.
New Zealand were at 471/4 at the end of the 49th over and had an opportunity to breach the unprecedented 500-run mark. 17-year-old Kerr, who was on strike in the last over, smashed three back-to-back boundaries but could score just seven off the last three deliveries as New Zealand finished on 491/4, just nine short of the 500-run landmark.
However, that did not prevent the total from becoming the highest ODI total across men's and women's cricket. The White Ferns overtook their own record of 455/5 which they scored in 1997 against Pakistan in Christchurch.
"We did play some really good cricket, to score 491 is pretty unbelievable no matter who it's against. I think just the way the girls got going, the way young girls are coming into the side, and they train to play like that because they want to be a part of Twenty20 cricket and the Big Bash and so they work on their shots and they know it's a power game now," New Zealand captain Suzie Bates said after the win.
In men's cricket, England's 444/3 against Pakistan in 2016 was the highest ODI score then. Just 10 days after this record was formed, the Eoin Morgan-led side piled up 481/6 against Australia.
New Zealand captain and top scorer Suzie Bates scored her runs at a strike rate of 160.63, which was the second highest in an innings of 100 or more in women's ODIs at that time.
It was remarkable that 26 overs in the Kiwi innings went for 10 or more runs per over. On the receiving end were Ireland who seemed hapless in front of New Zealand's power hitters.
Leg spinner Cara Murray, who was making her ODI debut, gave away 119 runs in the match - the most by a bowler in women's ODIs. Apart from Cara, Louise Little, Lara Maritz and Gaby Lewis conceded 92 runs each. Strikingly, only one bowler had given away more than 90 runs in women's ODIs before this match.
Despite leaking runs at a terrible pace, Cara had to bowl her full quota as Ireland all-rounder Isobel Joyce bumped her head on the ground while fielding and could bowl only one over.
In reply, Ireland were bowled out for just 144 in 35.3 overs, with skipper Laura Delany being their top scorer with 37. Leigh Kasperek picked up four wickets from just 2.3 overs as New Zealand won the match by a record 347 runs - the fourth-biggest victory in terms of runs in women's ODIs.
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