Australian batter Beth Mooney brings up half-century (Steve Bell/Getty Images)
- Beth Mooney starred with the bat as Australia clinched the T20 series against South Africa at Bellerive Oval in Hobart.
- Chasing 163 runs to win, Mooney’s half-century took Australia to a five-wicket win and 2-1 series triumph.
- Marizanne Kapp scored her third T20I half-century as the Proteas posted a competitive 162-7.
- For more sports news, go to the News24 Sport front page.
The Proteas women fell short of a historic T20 series win as Australia sealed a five-wicket victory in the third and deciding T20 at Bellerive Oval in Hobart on Tuesday.
Australia denied the SA women their first-ever series win against them as the hosts won the three-match T20 series 2-1.
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Opener Beth Mooney’s half-century trumped Marizanne Kapp’s fifty as the reigning T20 World Cup continued their winning streak against the South Africans.
After SA posted 162, Nonkululeko Mlaba struck early as she removed skipper Alyssa Healy for 10. The experienced Ellyse Perry fell shortly afterwards when she tried to cut Chloe Tryon but was bowled out for 13.
However, it was Mooney’s day as she brought up her 22nd T20 half-century to guide the Australians closer to their target.
Phoebe Litchfield tried to scoop Masabata Klaas and was caught behind for four, while Nadine de Klerk dismissed Tahlia McGrath for 16.
Ayabonga Khaka eventually got the wicket of Mooney, as she drove a late delivery and was caught at point for 82 off 55 balls (hitting 11 fours and a six).
However, the Proteas couldn’t stop a powerful Australian middle-order with Ashleigh Gardner hitting the winning runs with boundary in the final over to remain unbeaten on 25 as Australia won with four balls to spare.
After being asked to bat first, the Proteas lost Tazmin Brits in the first over when she was caught for a duck off Ashleigh Gardner.
Skipper Laura Wolvaardt, who led the Proteas to a historic victory in Sunday’s T20, went after a full delivery and was caught at mid-on for a quick 15.
Reeling at 28-3, Kapp and Anneke Bosch provided some resistance against a fearsome Australian attack as they put on a 80-run partnership before Bosch was caught at midwicket for 21.
Kapp, who played her 100th T20I for the Proteas, brought up her third T20I half-century as she made 75 off 48 balls (hitting 10 fours and a six) before she was bowled by McGrath (1/17).
Tryon made a handy 26 off 16 before she was caught and bowled by Georgia Wareham (1/25). De Klerk contributed an unbeaten 20 off 11 as the Proteas posted a competitive 162-7.
The two teams now turn their attention to the upcoming three-match ODI series, which starts on Saturday in Adelaide (05:10 SA time).
Scores in brief:
South Africa 162-7 in 20 overs (Kapp 75, Tryon 26, McGrath 1/17, Wareham 1/25)
Australia 166-5 in 19.2 overs (Mooney 82, Gardner 25*, Klaas 1/13, Tryon 1/23)
Result: Australia won by five wickets (with four balls remaining)