Turner: Wallaroos' fortunes turned after big win against Waves
JOINT Player of the Year Shaun Collins has deservedly received plaudits for his phenomenal season but there's a man in the second row who could rival the classy centre's consistency.
When asked for his side's best performers each week, there was one name Wallaroos coach Peter Waters repeatedly mentioned: Ben Turner.
The 23-year-old has scored two tries in his 13 games this season, but the praise stems from his actions in the centre of the field.
It generally takes multiple defenders to drag him down. most of which are left clutching only his blue-and-white jersey, and he never takes a backwards step.
But Turner isn't one to take the spotlight, instead palming off the plaudits to encompass his entire team's efforts.
"At the start of the year I injured my back so I missed a few weeks,” Turner said.
"But at this time of year, everyone's playing really good footy.”
Turner will line up alongside Corey Hellmuth in the second row when Wallaroos play their first Bundaberg Rugby League A-grade grand final since 2009.
It's been about four years since Turner's last BRL decider, an unsuccessful day at the office for the then- under-18s.
He won a Fraser Coast competition but has not yet tasted BRL success.
He and his teammates have changed all of that this season, producing one of Wallaroos' best seasons in the past decade.
While they finished third and boasted one of the best attacking rates in the competition, Turner said the turning point came three weeks ago.
"The game against (Waves Tigers), that was a big win for us,” Turner said.
"Then putting up those numbers against Hervey Bay last week (Wallaroos won 44-10), that was when we started to think we get this.
"None of us expected to put those points on Waves.
"I think everyone is nervous but very keen.”