ACT Meteors v Victorian Spirit
Victoria's Meg Lanning on her way to a record score of 175 during the WNCL match between the ACT Meteors and the Victoria Spirit at Manuka Oval. Photo: Getty Images
MEG LANNING, take a bow.
The ACT Meteors could only watch on in awe as the 20-year-old Victorian produced the greatest batting performance in Australian women's domestic cricket history on Saturday.
Lanning smashed the Meteors to all parts of Manuka Oval on her way to 175 from 142 balls, including 27 boundaries, to lay the platform for the Spirit's 65-run victory.
Her incredible innings broke the record for the highest individual score in the Women's National Cricket League set in 1998 by Australian great Karen Rolton, who made 173 for South Australia.
The Meteors started out strongly in pursuit of Victoria's imposing total of 8-286 before collapsing to be all out for 221, wicketkeeper-batter Laura Wright top-scoring for the hosts with 66.
''Bit disappointed with the loss, but there's not much you can do when Meg Lanning goes ballistic and scores 170-odd,'' Wright said.
''She's a class player and Manuka Oval's a bit of a road.
''Once she got going she was very hard to stop.
''It was good to watch from behind the stumps, but I just wish we got her out a bit earlier.''
Lanning is regarded as one of the brightest talents in the women's game, averaging more than 40 with the bat in 11 ODI appearances for the Southern Stars and has already featured in 27 T20 internationals.
All her class was on display, playing a lone hand despite wickets falling at regular intervals at the other end to ensure the Spirit recovered from Friday's Twenty20 loss.
The Meteors began their chase with purpose, Wright and Asha Smith (38) combining for a solid 89-run opening stand.
Their chase was all but doomed when they lost the wickets of Wright, Lynsey Askew (0) and Wu Kwan Wong (0) in the space of five balls to slump to 6-136.
Kate Owen defiantly held the tail together before being the last one out for 41.
''When Britty [captain Kris Britt] brought herself on to bowl she brought it back, but we weren't that great at times in the field,'' Meteors coach Andrew Dawson said.
''We went through periods where we certainly dropped off.
''Meg showed the difference between being an international player and a good domestic cricketer.''
Britt was the pick of the Meteors' bowlers with 3-26 in an attack missing Kiwi international Sian Ruck.
The Meteors take on the Spirit in a Twenty20 match at 10am today .
AT A GLANCE
VICTORIA SPIRIT 8-286 (M Lanning 175, K Applebee 42; K Britt 3-26) bt ACT METEORS 221 (L Wright 66, K Owen 41; K Beams 4-32, M Strano 4-45) at Manuka Oval on Saturday.