Lanning, Blackwell steer Aussies to victory

Like a true champion, Meg, returning from a stomach ailment, hammered five boundary shots and took her team past the finishing line with nine balls to spare. It was Australia’s fourth straight win in a Twenty20 International.

Meg Lanning, returning from a stomach ailment, scored an unbeaten 30 to guide her team to a win. (File photo)   -  Getty Images

Meg Lanning (30 not out off 19 balls) and Alex Blackwell (42 not out off 46 balls) put on 52 runs for the fifth wicket and steered three-time champion Australia to a six wicket win over South Africa in a Group A women’s league match of the ICC World Twenty20 at the Vidarbha Cricket Association ground at Jamtha here on Friday.

Declaring herself fit in the eleventh hour after complaining of a stomach ailment, the Australian captain, Meg, did not go for the toss-duty. She was off the field for 35 minutes of the first session and was allowed to bat only after half an hour into the Australian innings. She took charge of the proceeding at 53 for 4. And, like a true champion, she hammered five boundary shots and took her team past the finishing line with nine balls to spare. It was Australia’s fourth straight win in a Twenty20 International.

Earlier her teammates Rene Farrell, Jess Jonassen, Erin Osborne and Blackwell held superb catches at different parts of the field to restrict South Africa to 102. Rene’s two- handed effort -- diving in front at short third man -- was easily the best among the four.

Brief scores:-

South Africa 102 for six in 20 overs (Dane Van Niekerk 45, Trisha Chetty 34, Lauran Cheatle two for 13, Ellyse Perry two for 13) lost to Australia 105 for 4 in18.3 overs (Alex Blackwell 42 not out, Meg Lanning 30 not out, Shabnim Ismail two for 15).