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Bates guides New Zealand to victory over Pakistan

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A fighting half-century from captain Suzie Bates and some superb bowling has helped the WHITE FERNS claim a 42-run victory in the third Twenty20 International against Pakistan in Sharjah.

After winning the toss and electing to bat first, Bates and the WHITE FERNS top order found the early going tough and were 31-3 after the opening seven overs.

The used-wicket in Sharjah made free-scoring a challenge and the Otago Sparks pairing of Bates and wicket-keeper Katey Martin were forced to soak up the pressure in a patient partnership of 57 runs.

When Martin departed at the end of the 17th over for 25, the visitors were still looking a little vulnerable with just 88 runs on the board.

Auckland Hearts batswoman Katie Perkins came out to bat at number six and played a fine hand, as she scored 14 off 9 balls and allowed Bates to free her arms.

The right-hander belted back-to-back sixes as she and Perkins took 23 runs off the final over to boost the total up to a much healthier 126.

Pakistan made a positive start in reply and were well on target when they lost their first wicket for 39 at the end of the fifth over.

That wicket would trigger a collapse as the WHITE FERNS seized the initiative, claiming six wickets for just 18 runs in a clinical six-over burst.

Wellington Blaze leg-spinner Amelia Kerr was near impossible for the hosts to get away and she finished with the impressive figures of 2-8 from her four overs.

Bates and Canterbury Magicians bowler Thamsyn Newton also played their part in tying the hosts down, but it was Central Hinds pace-bowler Hannah Rowe who returned to put the game to bed.

On her Twenty20 International debut, the 21-year-old claimed 3-18 and was on a hat-trick at one stage, before Pakistan was bowled out for 84 in the 19th over.

Bates was named Player of the Match for her telling knock of 65 which helped set up the convincing victory and seal the T20I series 3-0 with one game remaining.

The final match of the tour is Tuesday.