Cricbuzz Staff •
Peter Handscomb struggled against the Indian pacers in the first two Tests of the series © Getty
Peter Handscomb put aside the disappointment of his Test team axe for the Boxing Day fixture by smashing a match-winning 70 off 35 balls for the Melbourne Stars in the Big Bash League against Sydney Sixers at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
Despite the win, however, the Australian batsman could not escape questions about his dropping from the Test side against India. While he admitted to be frustrated by it, Handscomb said he understood the move, saying ‘team balance’ was important.
“Team balance was a big thing for the squad and we’ve seen we really needed Mitch Marsh to bowl those overs,” Handscomb said. So it was an important change and that’s perfectly fine.”
Handscomb said he’s been talking to the coaches in the Australia set up – Justin Langer and Graeme Hick – to try and shrug off his poor form. He’s scored only one fifty in 15 innings since the 72 he made in Ranchi in 2017.
“I’ve gone about trying to tinker with a couple of things, working with ‘JL’ (national coach Justin Langer), working with ‘Hickey’ (batting coach Graeme Hick), having some good conversations about what we think needs to be done to score runs.
He aggregated 68 runs in four innings at Adelaide and Perth before being dropped in favour of Marsh. He was out to the pacers on all four occassions, leaving more doubters to question his technique, especially his penchant to stand way back in the crease and play mostly off the back foot.
Handscomb sid he’s gotten a little sick of all the talk about his technique and is working “a bit mentally and a little bit technically. It’s the same old conversation that has been happening with my technique for however many years now. I’m sort of sick of talking about it.”
He also know that now he’s out of the Test team, he will have to work doubly hard to force his way back. He believes Marsh will be preferred at the SCG, too, where the flatness of the pitch might force the need for another bowler.
“It’s going to be a tough call on their (the selectors) behalf,” he said. “Mitch Marsh is probably going to have to play if it (the SCG pitch) is flat and spinning, we’re going to need another bowler. And the other batters are batting really well.
“To come back in the side off the back of one T20 hit is a tough call, but I’ll put my hand up and work my arse off in the nets and hopefully something comes of it.”