The WHITE FERNS have prevailed in a remarkably see-saw match against the West Indies at Pukekura Park to wrap up a five-match T20 series with two games to spare.
The Windies needed just five runs off the last over but Anna Peterson took two wickets and a run out to restrict the West Indies to 133-7 and win the match by one run.
The WHITE FERNS had their backs to the wall early doors after the West Indies held the hosts to 134-7 from their 20 overs.
Sophie Devine was in great form as she blasted 41 off just 18 deliveries but she was one of the only WHITE FERNS batters who looked comfortable at the crease.
The West Indies spinners proved tricky to get away with Hayley Matthews (3-24) doing plenty of damage while Deandra Dottin (2-23) also bowled well for the visitors.
It was left to Suzie Bates to battle through the tough periods and guide the WHITE FERNS through to a respectable total.
The WHITE FERNS captain took her time to get going but carried her bat through the innings and brought up a well-earned half century with a boundary off the final ball.
A fighting 52 from Suzie Bates and 41 off 18 from Sophie Devine sess the WHITE FERNS post 134 from their 20 overs.— WHITE FERNS (@WHITE_FERNS) March 20, 2018
Over to the bowlers. Follow LIVE 📽https://t.co/9Wew0PaGxF🎥#NZvWI pic.twitter.com/m6y5UUqKkZ
The West Indies signalled their intent with the chase by moving captain Stafanie Taylor up the order alongside the big hitting Hayley Matthews.
It was up to the WHITE FERNS spinners to keep them in the game and it was Leigh Kasperek who struck first with the big wicket of Taylor (14) before making it two-in-two with the dismissal of Chedean Nation (8) in the her next over.
Then it was the leg-spin of teenager Amelia Kerr who drew a loose shot of big hitting opener Hayley Matthews (14) who was caught skilfully by Maddy Green.
That left the match evenly poised with the Windies 43-3 at the end of the seventh over.
Deandra Dottin smacked a few boundaries but the pendulum swung back the WHITE FERNS way in the 12th over when she departed to leave the Windies 73-4.
It was going down to the wire, much like the first game, as Suzie Bates rotated her bowlers well to keep Merissa Aguilleira and Kycia Knight contained.
The West Indies looked in the box seat though, as Aguilleira and Knight got the tourists through to needing just 12 runs off as many balls, but in similar circumstances to the first match the WHITE FERNS built pressure with tight death bowling.
Sophie Devine conceded just seven runs from the penultimate over before Anna Peterson’s two wickets and a run out took the wind out of the West Indies sails.
The fourth T20 is back at Pukekura Park on Thursday.