Christchurch: The mighty Aussies on Wednesday halted India in their stride when they handed them a 51-run defeat to emerge clear of the pool. India paid a heavy price for their fielding lapses as the Aussies, cashing in on the slackness of the Indians, posted an intimidating 223.Electing to bat first with ideal batting conditions, Australia were off to a healthy start. Belinda Clark and Lisa Keightley bringing up the Aussie fifty in the 15th over. However, the star of the previous game, Rupanjali Shastri gave India the first breakthrough when she had Clark caught and bowled. The opening pair put on 55 runs for the first wicket.The lady in form, for the Aussies, Karen Rolton then in the company of Lisa Keightley put on 110 runs for the second wicket. Although it took them close to 24 overs, it laid the foundation for the assault in the slog overs, which the Australians executed to perfection.Keightley posted 74 off 116 balls while Rolton made a brisk 61. Although Australia lost three wickets, after the departure of Rolton, rather cheaply, to cause a little bit of a flutter, the Aussie lower-middle order came up triumphs piling 42 runs of the last five overs.The spate of wickets, after the exit of Rolton, witnessed the next five overs yield only 16 runs. But Olivia Magno and Julia Price got stuck into the famed Indian attack to give the Indian dressing room a rethink about their over dependence on the spin quartet.Once the Australians put up the runs on the board it was always going to be a very steep task. Although India boasted of a highly talented batting line up, they were up against a highly professional outfit, as was the case with the Aussies, it then boiled down to a mental game. With the Australians being super quick, the Indian task gained Herculean proportions. Although the Indians were off to a sound start, the mounting over rate did them in.Chasing a target with an asking rate above four, the Indian openers did well to put up 55 runs in 15 overs but the departure of Jain, a direct hit by Magno, succeeded in applying the breaks on the India chase.Although Purnima and Anjum put up 55 runs for the second wicket they consumed too many overs, which in the ultimate analysis proved costly. The steep asking rate for the batsman to follow did not help matters as the strong Indian line up caved in to some tight bowling and brilliant fielding.Chandrakanta, however, made a valiant bid but eventually perished trying to up the rate. She made 23 of 24 deliveries. Anjum Chopra top scored on 47 but at a painstakingly slow rate. She compiled 47 of 105 balls.For the Australians McGregor once again proved to be the thorn in the opposition's flesh, picking up three vital wickets that of Anjum, Purnima and Chandrakanta. Mason picked up two for 22 while Fitzpatrick bowled a miserly spell and accounted for the wicket of Rupanjali Shastri.India's mainstay Mithali Raj had to sit out due to throat infection. India take on host New Zealand in yet another crucial match on December 09.