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Blackwell-inspired Aussie eves draw level

Published: Monday, February 11, 2008, 3:35 [IST]
 
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Sydney: Aussie eves defeated their English counterparts by 41 runs in the fifth and final one-dayer at Sydney Cricket Ground here on Monday.

Despite twice trailing in the five-game series, Southern Stars (Australia) fought back to earn a 2-2 draw, thanks in no small part to the efforts of Alex Blackwell.

The first tie was washed out.

Australia, riding on the Alex Blackwell's well compiled 61, set visitors a target of 211 for victory. In reply England were all out for 170 in the 47th over.

Stars' captain Karen Rolton won the toss and elected to bat first on a good batting wicket.

The Aussies got off to a strong start with Blackwell combining with fellow opener Shelley Nitschke (50) to put on 90 for the opening wicket. Alex, who scripted Aussie win in the second ODI with a classy ton, hit nine boundaries in her 125-ball knock. Shelley's 68-ball knock was studded with seven boundary hits.

Vice captain Lisa Sthalekar chipped in with 28, with Kate Blackwell also contributing a brisk 23.

Stephanie Davies was the pick of the bowlers for the visitors claiming a tidy 4-47 from her nine overs, while Nikkie Shaw bowled well and finished with figures of 1-16 off 10 overs.

In reply England got off to a poor start. Ellyse Perry (3-30) picked up both English openers in a devastating opening spell of fast bowling, but Charlotte Edwards (44) and Lydia Greenway (42) combined at the crease to get the visitors back on track with a useful 50-run stand for the fourth wicket.

The duo trying to up the ante conceded their wickets in quick succession. Sthalekar dismissed Edwards and Kirsten Pike (2-27) got rid of Greenway as the tourists' run chase started to go pear shaped.

The hosts cleaned up the last five English wickets for just 32 runs in less then seven overs.

Smit calls it a day: The conclusion of the series saw England wicketkeeper Jane Smit announce her retirement from international cricket. The 35-year-old called time on a career that spanned 16 years and saw her win 109 ODI caps.

Brief Scores:

Australia eves 211/9 in 50 overs (Alex Blackwell 61, Shelley Nitschke 50, Lisa Stahlekar 28, Kate Blackwell 23; Stephanie Davies 4 for 47) beat England eves 170 all out in 46.3 overs (Charlotte Edwards 44, Lydia Green way 42; Ellyse Perry 3 for 30, Kirsten Pike 2 for 27, Emma Sampson 2 for 30).

Agencies

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