After getting a surprise role with gloves in Vizag, Peter Handscomb wants to continue with the task

After getting a surprise role with gloves in Vizag, Peter Handscomb wants to continue with the task

Handscomb worked with former Australia wicket-keeper Brad Haddin.

Peter Handscomb
Peter Handscomb. (Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)

Australia’s top-order batsman Peter Handscomb had an unusual debut in the T20Is against India in Visakhapatnam on Monday as he played the game as a wicket-keeper. Although the Kangaroos have brought Alex Carey as their specialist wicket-keeper for both the T20I and ODI series, Handscomb got a call ahead of him in the first game. Australia won the first game in the final ball by 3 wickets though the wicket-keeper-batsman personally did not contribute much.

Handscomb, who has played 16 Tests and 11 ODIs already since making his debut in 2016, found himself involved in a terrible mix-up that resulted in the run-out of opener D’Arcy Short. That apart, the only other time the 27-year-old Victoria cricketer caught the eyes was when he completed the run-out of Rishabh Pant. With the bat, too, Handscomb did not have a memorable game as he scored 13 before getting caught by Mahendra Singh Dhoni off the bowing of an in-form Jasprit Bumrah.

Fitness key in keeping in 50-over games

The make-shift wicket-keeper though has taken the job seriously and said he can keep in the 50-over format as well provided he has the right fitness level. “I can keep and all, I just need to make sure I’m fit enough and strong enough that if we keep first in a 50-over game I can still go out there and bat at four or five and make sure I’m still running hard between the wickets and doing everything right by the team,” Cricbuzz cited reports quoting Handscomb as saying.

Carey, who is also the vice-captain of the Australian outfit for both the series, is likely to be back for the five ODIs starting next month but Handscomb is ready to continue with the task if he is asked to.

Handscomb said T20 cricket is “not too bad” since it is short and gets over quickly. He said the 50-over format can be a bit tougher, especially in the Indian conditions – the heat and the spinning wickets. Handscomb worked with former Australia wicket-keeper Brad Haddin and he thanked the latter for helping him in improving his glovework.

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