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Turkiye goalkeeper Mert Gunok makes last-gasp heroic save, best of the tournament

Turkiye goalkeeper Mert Gunok produced one of those unforgettable moments that will be talked about for years to come.

In the dying embers of the match, with the clock ticking into the 95th minute, Gunok’s extraordinary save ensured Turkey’s progression to the quarter-finals, marking a pinnacle in his career and a historic highlight for Turkish football.

The tension was palpable as the match drew to its dramatic conclusion. Turkey held a slender 1-0 lead, but Austria, managed by Ralf Rangnick, were throwing everything they had at the Turkish defence.

The clock was deep into stoppage time when Austrian forward Christoph Baumgartner found himself in the perfect position to equalize.

An inch-perfect cross from the wing met Baumgartner’s head, and for a split second, it seemed inevitable that the ball would find the back of the net.

However, what unfolded next was nothing short of miraculous. Mert Gunok, the Turkish shot-stopper, displayed lightning-fast reflexes and an extraordinary reach to deny Baumgartner’s powerful header.

Diving to his right, Gunok extended his arm fully and managed to get a firm hand on the ball, pushing it away from the goal line.

You can watch the footage below:

As the final whistle blew moments later, the Turkish players and fans erupted in celebration. Gunok’s save had secured their place in the quarter-finals, and the significance of his contribution was clear for all to see.