Nicole Bolton and Meg Lanning shared an unbeaten 161-run association to seal the win for Australia. © Getty Images

Nicole Bolton and Meg Lanning shared an unbeaten 161-run association to seal the win for Australia. © Getty Images

Half-centuries from Nicole Bolton and Meg Lanning, the captain, tied up a series victory for Australia Women as they eased to a nine-wicket win in their third One-Day International against South Africa Women on Wednesday (November 23). This despite an attacking maiden century from Lizelle Lee, the South African opener, in a rain-shortened game at North Sydney Oval.

Lee, the opener, smashed an 89-ball 102, which included six fours and seven sixes, as her side posted 173 for 8 in the match reduced to 32 overs a side. Australia, though, needed just 27.1 overs to overhaul the target and take a 3-0 lead in the five-match series.

Jess Jonassen and Grace Harris reduced South Africa to 33 for 2 after they chose to bat, and that was the cue for Lee to take off. She played the dominant role in a partnership of 110 with Mignon du Preez (36), which was broken only in the 26th over when Harris had du Preez caught.

After that, however, Lee found little support as Harris (3-31) and some sharp fielding resulted in a string of single-digit scores. Kristen Beams, who according to Cricket Australia was bowling despite dislocating her finger, got the prized wicket of Lee.

The total was a competitive one and the visitors would have been boosted by their early strike to send back Elyse Villani in the first over, right after she had smashed two fours.

However, Bolton (77 in 83 balls) and Lanning (80 in 75) would allow them no further celebration. The duo’s unbroken 161-run second-wicket association included a combined 13 fours and one hit over the fence.

The result also meant the hosts swept up all ICC Women’s Championship points available. They have already won the championship, and South Africa remained sixth, behind India, with all matches played. They now join India Women, Pakistan Women and Sri Lanka Women, who make up the bottom four of the championship table, as well as Ireland Women, Bangladesh Women, Zimbabwe Women, Thailand Women, Scotland Women and Papua New Guinea Women in the World Cup qualifiers, to be played in Sri Lanka from February 7 to 21.

Brief scores: South Africa Women 173/8 in 32 overs (Lizelle Lee 102, Mignon du Preez 36; Grace Harris 3-31) lost to Australia Women 174/1 in 27.1 overs (Nicole Bolton 77, Meg Lanning 80) by nine wickets. PoM: Lizelle Lee.