Sheffield Shield final: WA’s Ashton Turner smashes his first first-class century in Six years

Ashton Turner's knock powered Western Australia to 315, extending the reigning champions' first-innings lead to 120 on Day 3.

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Ashton Turner Western Australia
Ashton Turner Western Australia. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Western Australia (WA) batter Ashton Turner smashed a valiant century against Victoria in the Sheffield Shield final, at the WACA Ground, on Saturday, March 24. He scored the ton from 190 deliveries on Day 3 of the Sheffield Shield final. At one stage, WA were reeling with 53/4 on the board. In came Turner, who scored a gritty century to end his century drought in First Class cricket. The Aussie last scored a ton back in November 2017.

Turner scored 128 runs off 227 balls before being dismissed by Will Sutherland. The 30-year-old batter’s knock powered Western Australia to 315, extending the reigning champions' first-innings lead to 120 on Day 3. Meanwhile, he was the first player to score a half-century in the Sheffield Shield final. Turner has been recalled to the WA Shield line-up for the previous game as a replacement for the veteran batter, Shaun Marsh. Notably, Marsh announced his retirement last month.

On Day 1, Western Australia skipper, Sam Whiteman, won the toss and invited Victoria to bat first. Lance Morris claimed a three-wicket haul as Victoria were bundled out for 195 in their first innings. The Victoria opener Ashley Chandrasinghe was the Peter Handscomb-led side’s top scorer, scoring 46 off 280 balls. For WA, Joel Paris Matthew Kelly, and Aaron Hardie struck twice while Corey Rocchiccioli managed to scalp one wicket.

Ashton Turner brought Western Australia back into the match with his magnificent Century

During Western Australia’s first innings, Victoria all-rounder, Will Sutherland, claimed a three-wicket haul to derail WA. However, WA bounced back with Aaron Hardie (45 off 86) and Ashton Turner's crucial 86-run partnership for the fifth wicket. Notably, this stand could turn out to be a match-winning one as well.

Furthermore, Turner carried on his sublime knock and added an unbroken 36-run stand with keeper-batter, Josh Philippe. Philippe scored 28 runs off 43 balls before being dismissed by Scott Boland. WA were 175/5 at stumps on Day 2. However, the hosts were dismissed for 315 on Day 3, thereby extending their first-inning lead to 120 runs. For Victoria, Sutherland claimed a five wicket-haul. It is worth mentioning that Sutherland took a 5-wicket haul in last year's final as well.

But Victoria’s hopes of a comeback into this match got jolted in no time, as Joel Paris reduced the visitors to 2/10, with twin strikes. Ashley Chandrasinghe, who carried the bat in the first innings, got out cheaply in the second innings (8) along with Marcus Harris. Although skipper Peter Handscomb tried to show some resistance to bail out Victoria out of trouble with his gritty 52-run knock, it seemingly will not be enough with the visitors struggling with 101/6 on the board late in the day. Victoria still trails by 19 runs against Western Australia.

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