Smith ‘Shocked’ by Hayden’s ‘un-Australian’ Comment on Handscomb

Steve Smith defends Peter Handscomb

Steve Smith defends Peter Handscomb

Former Australia batter Matthew Hayden seemed unimpressed with Peter Handscomb’s knock on the second day of the Indore Test

Steve Smith-led Australia made a startling comeback in the third Test against India Indore, defeating the hosts by 9 wickets. The stand-in skipper garnered massive praise for exploiting the technical loopholes and catching the hosts off guard. But in due process, some of the Australian batters also had to face criticism for lack of intent while batting against India.

Former Australia batter Matthew Hayden, who is on commentary duties this series, seemed unimpressed with Peter Handscomb’s knock on the second day of the Indore Test. The latter scored a defiant 19 from 98 deliveries before the Aussies lost 6 wickets for 11 runs. However, Hayden didn’t look impressed.

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“(Handscomb’s) strike rate of under 20 means you are not going anywhere, and the scoreboard is not going anywhere,” he said on commentary.

“It’s almost un-Australian. It’s just not attacking enough,” he added.

The stand-in skipper was ‘shocked’ to hear such comments, stating that Handscomb has been ‘outstanding’ with the bat throughout the series and is also one of the top scorers for the team.

“I think he’s been outstanding in the first two Tests. A 70-odd, in the first innings, in both and left pretty much stranded. If one of the other top seven, I suppose, were able to get into a partnership with him, things could certainly be different,” Smith told reporters on the eve of the Ahmedabad Test.

Smith defended his teammate, praising his technique in Indore Test. He said Handscomb trusted his defence and his method helped him get runs in difficult conditions.

“I was pretty disappointed to see some of the comments last Test match around him not playing in the Australian way. He batted the same in the first innings, and throughout the whole series. He batted beautifully in the first two, he’s stuck to his method, he’s trusted his defence, and then scored off balls that were either overpitched or too short and played them off the back foot,” Smith said.

“His method has proved it’s worked in difficult conditions.

“So, I was shocked to see some comments about the way he was playing because I think he and Uzzy (Khawaja) have probably been arguably our two best batters in this series,” he added.

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