After being dropped for the ongoing Boxing Day Test against India, Peter Handscomb made an instant impression in the ongoing Big Bash League (BBL) 2018-19 by playing a match-winning knock for the Melbourne Stars against the Sydney Sixers on Thursday (December 27).
At the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG), Handscomb was fantastic with the willow, as the middle-order batsman smacked 70 off 35 balls at a strike-rate of 200 to help Stars to beat Sixers by 5 wickets.
However, Handscomb is pleased to make an immediate impact after MCG snub but isn’t confident that his T20 blitz would earn Test recall for the New Year's Test against India to be played in Sydney.
He was dropped from the Australian squad after his poor show against India, as his score reads 34, 14, 7 and 13 in the last outings at home, although, Handscomb wants to continue to play white-ball cricket and post big runs on the board to come back into the national Test side.
Handscomb also backed Mitch Marsh's inclusion in the third Test, saying: “Team balance was a big thing and we've seen that we've really needed Mitch to bowl those overs so it was an important change and that is perfectly fine. Marsh will probably have to play if it is flat or spinning, we'll need another bowler.”
Meanwhile, Tim Paine had hinted that Handscomb would be back in the reckoning for the Sydney Test after his snub for the MCG Test, but the batsman said it is going to be a tough call.
He continued, “It’s always nice for them (Paine) to say that. It’s going to be a tough call on their behalf as well. Also, other batters are batting really well so to come back into the side on the back of one T20 hit is a tough call, but I'll be working hard in the nets and hopefully, something comes of it.”
Handscomb's technique came under heavy scrutiny as many cricketing greats likes of Ricky Ponting and Shane Warne feels he is not good enough for Test cricket.
However, the 27-year-old admitted that it is something he has to work on and he has already discussed it with head coach Justin Langer and batting coach Graeme Hick.
He continued, “I've gone about maybe trying to tinker with a couple of things, working with JL and Hicky, having some good cricket conversations, open and honest conversations about what we think needs to be done so it was nice to come out here and bat well, but it is T20 and I had a bit of luck as well. [The changes are] a bit mentally, a bit technical as well. It's the same old conversation that's been happening with my technique for however many years, so sort of sick of talking about it, so it as just good to show I can still make runs.”
Now, he wants to make the most of the white-ball game to return in whites, adding: “I'm trying my best to play all formats, that's the goal. It's good to be able to keep. It's good fun, I enjoy keeping, always putting my hand up for white-ball keeping, it's good to have that string to my bow.”
Handscomb signed off by saying, “We saw Aaron Finch get picked in the Test side on the back of some solid T20 runs but that was multiple games, this was one hit and if I'm going to try and get back in I have to try and do it again and again and really force my hand so the selectors have no choice but to pick me. It was good to make runs today but doesn't mean much in the grand scheme of things.”
(With Cricketnext Inputs)