New Zealand women 278 for 9 (Devine 108, Bates 44, Taylor 3-54, Fletcher 3-55) beat West Indies women 278 for 9 (Taylor 90, Knight 44) by one run
New Zealand battled their own nerves, and a domineering onslaught from West Indies' Kyshona Knight , to claim a hard-earned, one-run victory in the first ODI in Lincoln.
Sophie Devine's century had given the hosts 278 to defend. But when offspinner Leigh Kasperek stepped up for the final over, there were only 10 runs in the bank. The action began with two nervy singles. Then came Tremayne Smartt's dismissal which lifted New Zealand's chances. Kyshona thrust West Indies ahead with a timely boundary. But she couldn't haul in the remaining five runs that the visitors still needed off the final two deliveries.
Until those final few moments, West Indies had been well placed, led by Stafanie Taylor's 90 off 93 balls. She struck eight fours and a six and played a key role in two fifty-run partnerships that ushered the score to 152 for 3 in the 35th over.
New Zealand hit back through 17-year old legspinner Amelia Kerr as she took a spectacular diving catch to dismiss the dangerous Deandra Dottin and bowled Britney Cooper in consecutive overs. When Taylor herself fell, West Indies were 215 for 6 in the 43rd over.
Kyshona took charge of the chase subsequently as she plundered three fours and a six in her 44 off 31 balls. West Indies nudged ever closer to their target until Kerr and Kasperek conceded a combined nine runs off the 47th an 48th overs to bring the equation down to 22 off 12. A costly 11-run penultimate over from Sophie Devine, however, tipped the scales back in the visitors' favour but not quite enough as it turned out.
Earlier, West Indies' decision to field backfired as three solid stands worth 76, 60 and 63 took New Zealand to 199 for 3 inside 35 overs. Devine was the major contributor as her third ODI century - which featured eight fours and two sixes - took New Zealand towards a comfortable position even though she was one of only two batsmen who could manage a score above 27.
West Indies' spinners Taylor (3 for 54), Afy Fletcher (3 for 55) and Hayley Matthews (2 for 68) picked up eight wickets between them. But in a game of small margins, an unbeaten tenth-wicket stand of 27 off 19 between Kasperek and Huddleston ensured New Zealand had just enough on the board.
New Zealand now have a 1-0 lead in the three-match series which is part of the second cycle of the Women's ODI championship.