Sophie Devine has starred with the bat scoring her maiden T20I century, leading her side to a comprehensive 69-run victory and an unassailable 3-1 series lead ahead of the final T20I in Dunedin on Thursday.
Devine was simply sensational, sharing in a NZ record partnership for the second wicket with Suzie Bates (142 runs), while her 105 came from just 65 balls and helped the WHITE FERNS reach a competitive 171-2 from their 20 overs.
The captain’s fifth successive T20 international half-century was also a record in itself for both men’s and women’s T20I cricket. Devine overtaking India’s Mithali Raj and T20 royalty in Brendon McCullum and Chris Gayle who have all hit four half centuries in a row.
To round out the records, Devine became just the second WHITE FERN to reach triple figures in T20I cricket, joining long-time team mate Bates with the special milestone.
With 171 runs on the board and a ton of momentum, the bowling innings was much of a formality for the home side.
The stand out at the bowling crease was Auckland’s Anna Peterson, the right-arm off spinner claiming 3-14 against a destructive South African batting line up.
Meanwhile, Jess Kerr picked up her first T20I wicket, finishing with figures of 2-17, while Rosemary Mair, Hayley Jensen, Melie Kerr and Devine all chipped in with a wicket each.
To cap a strong all-round performance, the WHITE FERNS were exceptional in the field, Jensen’s catch of Lizelle Lee off Devine’s bowling a standout in a strong fielding effort.
The series now heads to Dunedin for a game five, marking a special occasion for long time WHITE FERNS Bates and Katey Martin, who will play their first ever game at home.
AS IT HAPPENED...
WARM-UPS are GO! 🚀— WHITE FERNS (@WHITE_FERNS) February 10, 2020
The @BasinReserve has turned it on again, an absolute stunner☀️
25 mins ‘till toss and team news, stay tuned!
See you in your ‘lunch break’? #NZvSA #cricketnation pic.twitter.com/UOJuhD1h9R
FIVE overs gone here at the @BasinReserve and we've lost Lauren Down (11) but going at a good clip! The Old Firm of Devine & Bates out in the middle 🏏— WHITE FERNS (@WHITE_FERNS) February 10, 2020
🇳🇿 41/1 | https://t.co/PihBSDDqEX#NZvSA #cricketnation pic.twitter.com/yC0Tlyv1Bv
Happy coach! @sophdevine77 brings up 5️⃣0️⃣ for the fifth consecutive time! The first female to achieve such a feat in T20I cricket 👏🏽 👏🏽— WHITE FERNS (@WHITE_FERNS) February 10, 2020
🇳🇿 CARD | https://t.co/PihBSDV1wv#NZvSA #cricketnation pic.twitter.com/lYnpjXzM2A
C’mon Sophie Devine. Get that century.— Guy Heveldt (@GuyHeveldt) February 10, 2020
SUPER PARTNERSHIP! 100 runs between @sophdevine77 & @SuzieWBates - they've taken charge of this game! Five overs remain here at the @BasinReserve, what's a good total?!— WHITE FERNS (@WHITE_FERNS) February 10, 2020
🇳🇿 128/1 | https://t.co/PihBSDDqEX#NZvSA #cricketnation pic.twitter.com/rTt9tEEsac
WHAT an effort! Now we defend it. Superb batting from Devine (105), ably assisted by Suzie Bates 🏏— WHITE FERNS (@WHITE_FERNS) February 10, 2020
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🇳🇿 CARD | https://t.co/PihBSDV1wv#NZvSA #cricketnation pic.twitter.com/ojTNBosPpY
Anna gets one— Women's CricZone (@WomensCricZone) February 10, 2020
Laura Wolvaardt looked to sweep Anna Peterson but missed it. The ball strikes the top of off. Wolvaardt goes for 8
SA 18/1 (3.2)#NZvSA
WHAT A CATCH! @Jensen_Hayley takes an absolute screamer in the deep to remove the dangerous Lizelle Lee (25). Bowler? Yeah, you guessed it, Sophie Devine...!— WHITE FERNS (@WHITE_FERNS) February 10, 2020
🇿🇦 CARD | https://t.co/PihBSDDqEX#NZvSA #cricketnation pic.twitter.com/2j8L2vZASK
Most consecutive 50+ scores in T20Is:— hypocaust (@_hypocaust) February 10, 2020
5 Sophie Devine (NZ)👈
v IND, SA, SA, SA, SA (2019-20)
4 Brendon McCullum (NZ)
v WI, AUS, IND, IND (2008-09)
4 Chris Gayle (WI)
v NZ, NZ, AUS, ENG (2012)
4 Mithali Raj (IND)
v SL, PAK, SA, SA (2016-18)#NZvSA
WICKETS TUMBLING at the @BasinReserve! Kerr and Jensen pick up one each, Peterson has two and Devine one! Required rate over 12 now...— WHITE FERNS (@WHITE_FERNS) February 10, 2020
🇿🇦 CARD | https://t.co/PihBSDDqEX#NZvSA #cricketnation pic.twitter.com/uvnwdNSlnw
🚨RECORD ALERT🚨— Female Cricket (@imfemalecricket) February 10, 2020
Sophie Devine becomes the first cricketer (male or female) to score 5 consecutive 50+ scores in T20Is. @T20WorldCup are you listening? 😃 @WHITE_FERNS #T20WorldCup #SAvNZ pic.twitter.com/mqd60329NH