Handscomb delighted with debut


Australia new boy Peter Handscomb is thrilled to have been a part of an historic Test in Adelaide even more so because he hit the winning runs.

When Matt Renshaw and Handscomb guided Australia to victory in Adelaide it was only the second time in Test history that two debutants were at the wicket when the winning runs were scored.

Handscomb scored a vital first innings fifty that together with a half centuries from Steve Smith and Mitchell Starc and a ton from Usman Khawaja gave the home side a big first innings lead that ultimately set up the win.

ESPN Cricinfo reports Handscomb has said: “It was a nice little script out there.

“I was kind of hoping I didn’t have to bat in that second innings, or at least that Matty Renshaw would hit the two runs that were needed and I could just sit on my bat. But it was nice to be out there, and with Matty as well in his first game, it was pretty cool.”

While Renshaw and Handscomb got off to fine starts the third debutant Nic Maddinson couldn’t get off the mark having been bowled by a ripper from Kagiso Rabada for a 12 ball duck.

Handscomb backed the New South Wales man to come good though: “He’s fine, he’s a resilient player who knows his own game and he’s just a great bloke.

“If you get a good ball you’re happy to go out to it – bowlers are allowed to bowl good balls. He’s fine. He’s still feeling good, and if he gets another opportunity I daresay he’ll come out and whack them.”

Handscomb has returned to his state team Victoria and will have a Shield game before he rejoins the Australia squad to prepare for the pink ball Test against Pakistan at the Gabba in Brisbane.

The batsman added: “I’ve never batted at the Gabba with the pink ball under lights.

“It will be a whole new feeling. We’ll just have to wait and see, I think.”

Handscomb feels his unorthodox style and habit of batting deep in the crease helped him take on the moving ball against South Africa.

“Batting deep in the crease came because I like to play off the back foot as much as I can, so the deeper I am the more chance the ball is going to be at a shorter length.

“But also, mate, bowlers are fast. These guys can bowl some good clicks.

“The deeper I am, the longer I get to see the ball and react to it off the wicket or react to it in the air. It’s just something that I developed a couple of years ago with [former Victoria coach] Greg Shipperd and since then it’s all gone pretty well.”

Having made his debut Handscomb now dreams of playing a boxing day Test at his home ground, the historic Melbourne Cricket Ground.

He said: “Hopefully I can get there first, get selected, and if I get the opportunity to come out here in front of a Boxing Day crowd, I’ll be pretty stoked. Hopefully it happens. I was just about to put my order in for a few Boxing Day Test tickets, so I might just hold off on that.”