Australia earned a straightforward seven-wicket win over Pakistan in Tauranga despite a 99-run stand between Bismah Maroof and Aliya Riaz.
Bismah top-scored with 78 not out for her first fifty since returning from maternity leave but it was not enough as a disciplined bowling display and an Alyssa Healy half-century earned Australia their second consecutive win at the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup 2022.
Pakistan are without a win after two games as slow scoring again hampered their chances of an upset, setting Australia just 191 to win in Mount Maunganui.
Healy was supported by 35 from skipper Meg Lanning and 34 from Rachel Haynes.
Despite a much-improved performance on their first-round loss to India, Pakistan paid the price for a sluggish run rate.
All-rounder Aliya Riaz made a creditable 53 but it came off 109 balls, while Australia’s top order scored at almost a run a ball.
The result puts Australia top of the tournament’s eight-team leaderboard but leaves Pakistan bottom with a struggle to make the final four after two losses.
“Everyone’s in really good form, we all got starts and I guess we’re all feeling in good nick,” Lanning said. “Pakistan did extremely well and made it hard for us to take wickets so we were disciplined and kept that run rate in check.”
Bismah said Pakistan were unable to exert pressure in the field.
“We could have stopped them, they gave us chances but we didn’t capitalise,” she said. “In fielding we could have done much better.”
Pakistan face South Africa on Friday while Australia’s next challenge is against hosts New Zealand on Sunday.