Handscomb hopeful of Test recall for India tour

Peter Handscomb hopes his weight in runs can open the door for an Australian test recall, but admits selection on the tour to India is largely out of his hands.

Handscomb will have one last chance to make his case when he leads a Cricket Australia XI against South Africa starting in Brisbane on Friday.

The 31-year-old will then swap the white for the colored kit, having signed a late deal to join the Melbourne Renegades for the upcoming BBL season. Handscomb has not been seen in the Testarena since it was dropped nearly four years ago.

“I’m around there… so the talks [with Test selectors] are promising,” Handscomb told reporters on Tuesday. “But you also have to look at the Test squad and there are guys who are in front of me and there are batsmen who are doing some pretty impressive things.

“I can score as many points as I want but there still needs to be a place at the next level and at the moment they are playing pretty good cricket.”

Known for his ability to play spin, the right-hander’s best chance for an India tour recall would come if the selectors don’t back Travis Head to return to the subcontinent after his grueling tours of Sri Lanka and Pakistan this year. Handscomb’s versatility as a capable wicket-keeper could also play into his hands.

“All you can do as a batter is work your way through the weight of the numbers,” Handscomb said. “I grab the gloves to make sure they also know I’m still available as a back-up keeper, or can take them with me if needed. That’s also an important skill to have in your bag.”

Handscomb joins Renegades after two seasons with the Hobart Hurricanes, which followed a long stint with the Melbourne Stars.

Handscomb, a 78-game BBL veteran, has an average of nearly 25 with a batting rate of over 120 after batting anywhere from opener to No. 7 over the past four summers.

Handscomb adds even more firepower to a strong Renegades batting lineup featuring Aaron Finch, Shaun Marsh, Nic Maddinson and overseas signings Andre Russell and Martin Guptill.

“I haven’t played my best cricket in the T20 format for the past few seasons, but that could change quite quickly,” said Handscomb. “Hopefully if I get a chance sometime this season I will grab it with both hands and do everything I can to help us win.”

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Merry C. Vega is a highly respected and accomplished news author. She began her career as a journalist, covering local news for a small-town newspaper. She quickly gained a reputation for her thorough reporting and ability to uncover the truth.

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