Ashton makes heads turn around with brutal knock

Ashton makes heads turn around with brutal knock

From a relative anonymity, Ashton Turner earned overnight fame with a 43-ball 84 against India. AFP

Ashton Turner was barely known in this part of the world till he came to bat on Sunday. In less than 24 hours of his mind blowing innings, he was all over the internet. The 26-year-old Western Australian, the last-minute inclusion in the fourth-ODI, has earned rich praise for his knock which led his side to complete its highest chase.

Turner’s blitzkrieg couldn’t have been timed better with the Indian Premier League around the corner. Picked by Rajasthan Royals for mere a Rs 50 lakh, the Australian had recently told The West Australian about his IPL selection: “I have no idea why they picked me.”

Turner also had no clue he would be playing in his second ODI on Sunday. He thought he would be carrying drinks. "I'm lost for words. I turned up to the ground today. Marcus Stoinis was doing his fitness test. He is a pretty tough bloke, so I thought he would get up and play and I would be running drinks again. It was a last-minute (situation), to transition my mind from not playing to playing. I had a lot of confidence. I was ready to go if given a chance. It's not every day that we get to play,” he said.

The composure with which he finished the chase won him many admirers. However, those who knew them were not surprised. Turner was already highly rated by coach Justin Langer and Ricky Ponting. His international career, comprising two ODIs and five T20Is, might have just started but Turner is known for his chasing capabilities in T20 format. A classic finisher in Big Bash League, where he played for Perth Scorchers, he flaunts an impressive strike rate of 138.72 in T20s

Peter Handscomb, who hit a century in the chase, was all praise for Turner.

“We all had seen Ashton play such knocks in the BBL and he knew whom to target in the last nine overs. We had a sort of belief at the start of the T20 series, and to come and do it again in the ODIs proved that it was not a fluke,” he said.