A Lauren Down century backed up by a tight bowling display has secured a comprehensive 166-run victory for New Zealand in the Governor-General’s XI match at Sydney’s Drummoyne Oval.

The Rose Bowl trophy is out of reach for New Zealand - Australia holding an unassailable 2-0 series lead in the Commonwealth Bank ODI Series - but a convincing win over a side of Australia’s finest young talent will see the visitors will regain some confidence ahead of Sunday’s final one-day international at Junction Oval in Melbourne.

After batting at three for New Zealand in the first two ODIs and failing to make much scoreboard impact, Lauren Down was sent out to open the batting for the White Ferns, in the absence of Sophie Devine who missed with a back niggle, and stamped her authority on the match early in the innings.

Down anchored the New Zealand innings brilliantly, top-scoring with 107 (134). Fellow opener Suzie Bates struck 43 off 50, but it was the 163-run partnership between Down and Katey Martin that proved most destructive.

Flashes of brilliance, and perhaps a touch of luck saw the Governor-General’s XI pick up a late flurry of wickets, but in the end the Kiwis took full advantage of a loose bowling attack to set the hosts an imposing total of 323 at Drummoyne Oval.

With a monster chase ahead of them, GG’s XI openers Josie Dooley and Tahlia McGrath needed runs on the board early to give their side any hope of mowing down the New Zealand total. However, a duck for McGrath in the first over set the tone for an innings that never saw the Australian batters able to dig their heels in.

Coming in at No. 5, Annabel Sutherland showed her flair to produce an entertaining knock and give the hosts a spark of hope.

However, as has often been the case this summer for Australian batters, Sutherland found herself with no answers to an Amelia Kerr wrong-un and she was sent back for 32 (46).

Captain Alex Blackwell managed to add another 26 to the scoreboard, followed by an exciting 28 from Erin Burns, but it became increasingly clear that plenty more firepower would be required to chase the New Zealand total.

Three quick wickets for Anna Peterson in the closing stages of the match saw the Governor-General’s XI bowled out for 157, with 70 balls to spare.