A dominant Western Australia thumped Victoria by nine wickets to win a second consecutive Sheffield Shield final Sunday on the back of a fine century from Ashton Turner, cementing their status as a domestic powerhouse.
After winning the toss and sending Victoria in, they bowled the visitors out for 195 at the WACA Ground in Perth before compiling 315 in reply with player-of-the-match Turner hitting 128.
His measured 227-ball knock came against a quality attack led by seamer Scott Boland and spinner Todd Murphy, both fresh from Australia’s recent Test series in India.
With Victoria on the back foot, WA turned the screws by bowling them out again for 210.
Matthew Kelly grabbed 4-41, with the only resistance from Will Sutherland (83) and captain Peter Handscomb (52), leaving WA to chase 91 to win, which they did comfortably on day four.
Opener Cameron Bancroft, the tournament’s top-scorer this season, hit the winning runs in his 39 not out.
“As long as I’ve played Shield cricket, Victoria has always been the team to beat and it’s still the same today so congrats to them on a great season,” said WA skipper Sam Whiteman.
“It really takes a whole squad to win a Shield, I think we’ve had over 20 players this year, which has been an incredible effort,” he added.
“For those players to come in and perform is a huge reason why we are standing here with this Shield today.”
Handscomb paid tribute to WA’s stellar season but also to his young, emerging team.
“At the start of the season, we didn’t think maybe the Shield final was in our grasp,” said the Test star.
“But we played beautiful, beautiful cricket with a young team and everyone pushing really hard and doing all the right things. It’s a really good sign of what’s to come.”
It was WA's 17th Shield title since joining the competition in 1947-48