India and Australia will renew their rivalry in white-ball cricket after seven months when they take each other on in the first of the three ODIs in Mumbai on Tuesday. This time, the Kangaroos have also picked two of their major batsmen — David Warner and Steve Smith — who were not there the last time they came to India in February-March last year. Yet, Aaron Finch’s side ended up winning both the T20I and ODI series — the second more dramatically by coming from behind.
As the fans keep their eyes on the Warner-Smith duo, middle-order batsman Ashton Turner said someone has to be crazy not to pick either of the two’s brains on how to play Indian spinners on sub-continental tracks. Turner made the headlines last time by slamming an incredible 84 not out in 43 balls to give his team a famous win in Mohali while chasing a target over 350.
The 26-year-old, however, hasn’t played more than three ODIs in his career so far and all of them have come in that series. The 84 not out was only his second game. Australia had levelled the five-match series with that win and then won the final one to clinch the series 3-2.
“I take a lot of confidence out of that (2019 series) against a world-class team and a world-class bowling attack. It has given me confidence that my ability is good enough against the best in the world,” Turner, who had made some serious hitting against the likes of Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav last year, was quoted as saying News18 on the eve of first ODI.
Crediting the Warner-Smith duo for having guided him on making plans on how to tackle Indian spinners, said: “As a young player coming into the team with little international experience, I’d be crazy not to be picking their brains and trying to learn from them because those two guys are the two best in the world.”
Ashton Turner got to play in IPL after the knock
Turner, who got to play in the Indian Premier League after the explosive batting display in the series, said the few weeks that he had spent with Smith in the Rajasthan Royals camp made him learn a lot. “I was fortunate to spend a few weeks with Steve at the IPL (with Rajasthan Royals). I spent so much time watching him bat in the nets and picking his brains about how (he) plays particularly in India,” he added.
Turner was unfortunate to have missed a berth in Australia’s World Cup squad last year because of a bad shoulder but will be looking to make it big in this year’s T20 World Cup. In the T20s, Turner has a strike rate of 134 plus.
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