July 22, 2020 / 8:49 AM / 13 days ago

Hurt' yet hopeful, Australia's Handscomb eyes World Cup 2023

MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Peter Handscomb says he is upset not to be included among Australia’s top 26 limited-overs cricketers, but believes his proficiency against spin bowling will secure him a place in the 2023 World Cup in India.

FILE PHOTO: Cricket - ICC Cricket World Cup Semi Final - Australia v England - Edgbaston, Birmingham, Britain - July 11, 2019 Australia's Peter Handscomb leaves the field after being bowled out by England's Chris Woakes Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Boyers

The 29-year-old played the last of his 22 one-day internationals in the 2019 World Cup semi-final against eventual champions England.

The Victorian was earlier this month left out of Australia’s preliminary 26-man squad for their provisional white ball tour of England in September.

“I still thought I was in the top 20 one-day players given what I had done over the last year and a half. To not be in the 26, that really hurt,” Handscomb told cricket.com.au. “Going from being in the 15 and then having 11 guys essentially jump me – I know they’re different roles and different positions – but that hurt a fair bit.”

Handscomb is struggling to break into Australia’s formidable middle order featuring batting mainstay Steve Smith, in-form Marnus Labuschagne and wicketkeeper Alex Carey.

A chat with new selector George Bailey has, however, convinced Handscomb he would be in the reckoning for the 2023 World Cup in India, where spinners usually trouble the batsmen.

“I had a really, really good conversation with George,” said Handscomb, whose English county stint with Middlesex this year did not materialise because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I would like to think with the World Cup in India in 2023 that I am at least on their radar,” said Handscomb.

“I’d consider myself a good player of spin and being able to control those middle overs.

“George did mention that in our conversation, that it is hopefully something I can aspire to. With that being three years away, there’s still a lot of cricket to be played and water to go under the bridge.”

Reporting by Amlan Chakraborty in New Delhi; Editing by Alex Richardson

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