Mohali: Skipper Suzie Bates led from the front with a quickfire half-century as New Zealand Women registered a comprehensive 93-run victory over Ireland Women in their World T20 Group A clash on Friday.
Fresh from comfortable win against Sri Lanka, New Zealand posted a competitive 177 for three after opting to bat and then restricted Ireland to 84 for five in their allotted 20 overs at the PCA stadium here.
Kiwi opener Bates scored 82 off just 60 deliveries that included seven hits to the fence and two sixes, while Sophie Devine also chipped in with a crucial 34-ball 47.
Bates and Devine put on an important 104-run stand together for the second wicket to put Kiwis on the course for setting their rivals a competitive target.
After Devine’s dismissal, captain Bates continued in the able company of Sara McGlashan (14 not out). The two added 44 runs for third wicket to steer the team past 150-run mark.
Chasing 178 for victory, Ireland were never in the fray as they kept on losing wickets at regular interval and failed to reach even the three-figure mark.
Captain Isobel Joyce fought a lone battle for Ireland, scoring 33-ball 28. But all others came a cropper against the Kiwi bowlers.
14-year-old Gaby Lewis (16 not out) remained unbeaten, even as Ireland started their World Twenty20 campaign on a losing note.
Spinner Erin Bermingham was the pick of the New Zealand bowlers with figures of two for 17, while Morna Nielsen, Leigh Kasperek and Devine took wicket apiece.
Meanwhile, the match was virtually played before empty stands with crowds giving the event a miss.
New Zealand Women: 177 for three in 20 overs (Suzie Bates 82, Sophie Devine 47).
Ireland Women: 84 for five in 20 overs (Isobel Joyce 28; Erin Bermingham 2/17, Morna Nielsen 1/13).