ADELAIDE - Australia has one hand on the Constellation Cup after a polished eight-goal win over New Zealand in the netball test in Adelaide on Friday.
The 58-50 victory gives the Diamonds a 2-1 lead in the series with two tests to play.
Kim Green was brilliant for the Aussies at wing attack and then centre while Cailtin Bassett and Natalie Medhurst shot well all night, Medhurst in her 50th appearance for the national team.
For the Kiwis, legend Irene van Dyke was on fire early hitting with 18 from 19 attempts before being subbed out at three-quarter time, the Silver Ferns trailing by 13 and appearing to concede the game.
Goal attack Maria Tutaia toiled hard but went missing at key moments in the third quarter, largely thanks to the close attention from Aussie goal defence Bianca Chatfield.
Centre Laura Langman was probably New Zealand's best on the night while Shannon Francois was also good when subbed in for the second half.
Captaining the team for the first time on home soil, Laura Geitz seemed nervous early, giving up a string of penalties but had the better of the Kiwi attack in the second half.
As well as a key game in the series, the win takes the Diamonds' head-to-head record against the Silver Ferns to 67-45 and continues the national team's winning streak in Adelaide where they have not been beaten for more than 20 years.
Geitz said the team stuck to its game plan but still believed they could improve in the next test in Melbourne on Monday.
"There's obviously a few things we can work on," she said.
Star Silver Ferns defender Leana de Bruin was a late withdrawal from the game after injuring a calf in training on Wednesday.
She was initially named on the bench but coach Waimarama Taumaunu elected not to risk her with two tests still to play.