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David Warner and Peter Handscomb shine in Bangladesh

Ronan O'Connell Columnist

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    A wonderfully patient knock by David Warner and a typically fluent contribution from Peter Handscomb has put Australia in a strong position heading into Day 3 of the second Test in Bangladesh.

    Warner and Handscomb’s 127-run partnership guided Australia to 2-225, trailing Bangladesh by just 80 runs.

    Warner played one of the most circumspect knocks of his 66-match Test career, which was in stark contrast to his free-flowing 112 in the first Test.

    That innings at Dhaka came at a sizzling strike rate of 83 and included a whopping 17 boundaries. Yesterday, Warner scored at a strike rate of just 51 and struck only four boundaries during his 170-ball stay.

    To get an idea of just how patient Warner was, consider that, in his Test career, he has made 44 scores in excess of 50, yet only five have been at a strike rate less than 60.

    What was most impressive was the manner in which Warner maintained his composure after a slow, scratchy start.

    Warner loves to begin with a cluster of boundaries to assert his dominance over the bowlers. Here he shackled his ego and was content to let the Bangladesh bowlers control the tempo, even while his partner, Steve Smith (58), was scoring swiftly.

    As his innings wore on, Warner expanded his repertoire of shots but remained careful in choosing which balls to attack.

    It was an anchor innings, the likes of which his former opening partner, Chris Rogers, used to play regularly. Warner benefited from many of those by Rogers, enjoying the most prolific period of his career during the time he played alongside the veteran.

    Yesterday, it was Warner’s calm which aided Handscomb and Smith, who both looked to take on the bowlers more often.

    Smith skipped away to 31 from 32 balls, with six boundaries in this early period, as he sought to put the spinners under heavy pressure. The Australian skipper was in complete control at the crease and looked set for a big century before playing for the turn and being bowled by a straight delivery from Taijul Islam.

    That brought to the crease Handscomb, who like Warner before him looked out of sorts in his 45 minutes at the crease. The 26-year-old struggled to rotate the strike early and, on 7 from 26 balls, he appeared to be stuck in the mud.

    But, following Warner’s lead, Handscomb exercised fine self-control and scrapped through this tough period. Soon enough he broke free and began to find a sprightly rhythm. Of particular note was his nimble and assertive footwork, as he regularly skipped down the track to turn good deliveries into half-volleys.

    Even when he stayed in the crease, Handscomb made a point of getting well forward in defence, after playing off the back foot so regularly in the first Test.

    As I pointed out in a recent article, Handscomb has continually made good starts during his six Tests in Asia this year, only to waste them, getting out for between 15 and 33 eight times.

    He has the makings of a batsman who can be a prolific scorer in Asia. Australia need him to start that transformation today by going on to make a big century and put them in a dominant position.

    Ronan O
    Ronan O'Connell

    Ronan O'Connell has been a journalist for well over 13 years, including nine at daily newspapers in WA. He now traverses the world as a travel photojournalist, contributing words and photography to more than 30 magazines and newspapers including CNN, BBC, The Toronto Star, The Guardian, The South China Morning Post, The Irish Examiner and The Australian Financial Review. Check out his work and follow him on Twitter @ronanoco

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    The Crowd Says (85)

    • Roar Pro

      September 6th 2017 @ 6:45am
      Ben Sewell said | September 6th 2017 @ 6:45am | ! Report

      This is what happens when we apply ourselves at the crease. Admittedly, that pitch looks flat AF, but we batted with grit and determination and as a result, have our noses in front. Keen for Handscomb to get a ton today and solidify his Ashes spot along with it.

      • September 6th 2017 @ 9:02am
        Ross said | September 6th 2017 @ 9:02am | ! Report

        Handscombe is pure class and this again emphasise that we have a keeper in waiting here as he is such a good batsman and can keep if given time

        • September 6th 2017 @ 9:19am
          qwetzen said | September 6th 2017 @ 9:19am | ! Report

          You are to cricket what Conor McGregor is to boxing.

        • Roar Guru

          September 6th 2017 @ 9:22am
          Edward L'Orange said | September 6th 2017 @ 9:22am | ! Report

          But do we want to risk his batting by drawing his attention to keeping? He’s becoming a really solid part of our middle order, and I’m quite loath to endanger that by dividing his duties.

          And Wade is doing better than I ever thought he would, I must admit. There are also a couple of other ‘keepers in the country who may be able to step up should Wade fall away.

        • September 6th 2017 @ 11:01am
          Perry Bridge said | September 6th 2017 @ 11:01am | ! Report

          With Handscomb – you note that even if he’s getting out in the 15-33 range – he is not getting out straight away – if there’s no collapse at the other end – then a 15-33 means another 30, 50,….75 runs for the next wicket.

          • September 6th 2017 @ 11:33am
            Stephen said | September 6th 2017 @ 11:33am | ! Report

            Khawaja has never been given a chance on a true pitch on the sub continent like yesterday’s pitch, same happened in sri lanka when the third test was played on a flat wicket

      • September 6th 2017 @ 10:49am
        Pedro the Maroon said | September 6th 2017 @ 10:49am | ! Report

        And with only 5 batsmen, we need these guys to keep going.
        Usman Khajawa might have liked the truer bounce of this pitch.

        • Roar Rookie

          September 6th 2017 @ 12:17pm
          Disco Stu said | September 6th 2017 @ 12:17pm | ! Report

          Who are you counting as the non-batsman?

          Cartwright averaged over 50 in the shield last season and Maxwell scored a century in India this year.

          • September 6th 2017 @ 1:40pm
            Ouch said | September 6th 2017 @ 1:40pm | ! Report

            I was wondering that too.

    • Roar Pro

      September 6th 2017 @ 6:50am
      Andrew Young said | September 6th 2017 @ 6:50am | ! Report

      Well said, Ronan. His temperament was most impressive, and isn’t the team reaping the benefits. Love the way Handscomb goes about it, hoping for more of the same.

      • September 6th 2017 @ 9:06am
        jameswm said | September 6th 2017 @ 9:06am | ! Report

        Yep – but we really need him to go and make a big score. He or Warner. Or better yet both.

    • Roar Rookie

      September 6th 2017 @ 7:21am
      Lancey5times said | September 6th 2017 @ 7:21am | ! Report

      Well batted.
      Having Smith come in at 3 after the early wicket made a massive difference as well. 2 for 15 with Khawaja in the sheds makes 300 seem quite a way away. Well done to the selectors.

      Anyone know the forecast for the next few days?

      • September 6th 2017 @ 8:59am
        Ross said | September 6th 2017 @ 8:59am | ! Report

        Lance as usual you couldn’t help yourself bringing khawaja down when this article is not about him, it’s blindingly obvious this pitch is easier to bat on and khawaja was taken out by hohns just like he did on a flat Sri Lanka pitch so hard to judge khawaja when he didn’t get to bat on this flat track but you keep your attack on khawaja going

        • September 6th 2017 @ 10:17am
          George said | September 6th 2017 @ 10:17am | ! Report

          Khawaja is always dropped when an overseas pitch is a road.

          • September 6th 2017 @ 12:10pm
            dangertroy said | September 6th 2017 @ 12:10pm | ! Report

            Maybe the pitch just seems like a road when Khawaja isn’t batting on it.

            • September 6th 2017 @ 12:11pm
              dangertroy said | September 6th 2017 @ 12:11pm | ! Report

              Maybe the pitch just seems like a road when Khawaja isn’t batting on it.
              By all means lets keep picking guys that can only succeed when the pitch is flat and the ball doesn’t do much.

            • Roar Rookie

              September 6th 2017 @ 12:13pm
              Lancey5times said | September 6th 2017 @ 12:13pm | ! Report

              That’s likely to enflame 😉

          • September 6th 2017 @ 1:41pm
            Ouch said | September 6th 2017 @ 1:41pm | ! Report

            Always? When are the other times?

            • September 6th 2017 @ 2:28pm
              Pope Paul VII said | September 6th 2017 @ 2:28pm | ! Report

              Melbourne 2011 (admittedly that’s only overseas if you are coming back to it but he was in Tassie in the previous test)
              Oval 2013
              SL 2016

              In all cases the following tracks were better for batting than the previous test resulting in him getting the boot.

      • September 6th 2017 @ 9:01am
        Ross said | September 6th 2017 @ 9:01am | ! Report

        Lance as usual you couldn’t help yourself bringing khawaja down when this article is not about him, it’s blindingly obvious this pitch is easier to bat on and khawaja was taken out by hohns just like he did on a flat Sri Lanka pitch so hard to judge khawaja when he didn’t get to bat on this flat track but you keep your attack on khawaja going and frankly it’s pathetic

        • Roar Rookie

          September 6th 2017 @ 9:15am
          Lancey5times said | September 6th 2017 @ 9:15am | ! Report

          Think what you want champ but the Australian top order enjoying success on the subcontinent does have something to do with Khawaja given the results when he is in the side in that crucial number 3 position. Smith is perfectly suited to this role in these conditions.

          I look forward to Khawaja coming back into the team on more suitable wickets but there is no denying that this side is better placed with these individuals in these particular batting positions and the selectors should be commended for making the tough call.

          • September 6th 2017 @ 9:26am
            Ross said | September 6th 2017 @ 9:26am | ! Report

            Plus this article had nothing to do with khawaja, ronan rightly focused on the success yesterday too but you had to slip your negativity for khawaja in there

          • Roar Rookie

            September 6th 2017 @ 9:43am
            Lancey5times said | September 6th 2017 @ 9:43am | ! Report

            ‘How does our success in sun continent have anything to do with Khawaja’s absence’

            He doesn’t score any runs on the subcontinent. The numbers don’t lie. How cricket works is that more runs is good and less runs are bad. The team with the players that score more runs tend to be better placed to enjoy success.

            And your continued use of the race card makes one of us look bad and it’s not me

          • Roar Guru

            September 6th 2017 @ 9:53am
            Edward L'Orange said | September 6th 2017 @ 9:53am | ! Report

            Let’s not play the race-card, mate, it’ll get the moderators involved. There are legitimate statistical reasons for Khawaja not being relied upon in sub-continent conditions, but there are cricket-based arguments the other way too. Best stick to them.

    • September 6th 2017 @ 7:59am
      4 leaf clover said | September 6th 2017 @ 7:59am | ! Report

      David Warner can you please buy a lotto ticket for me.
      Dropped in the first test early, dropped early in the second test and a shocking missed stumping, was that far out of the crease he came back with a pizza and a hair cut. Got to take those chances.

      • September 6th 2017 @ 8:42am
        Matting wicket said | September 6th 2017 @ 8:42am | ! Report

        Seriously, is that the best you can come up with? I get that you don’t like David, but he was dropped on 52, not “early”, the ball was off the full face of the bat at short leg. As for the stumping, the ball bounced half its normal height, that’s why both Warner and the keeper missed it!

        But thanks for the “alternative facts”.

      • September 6th 2017 @ 8:55am
        doogs said | September 6th 2017 @ 8:55am | ! Report

        maybe go and have a nice soothing green tea and sit down. Relax. If you can’t enjoy his batting then probably best you check out another sport that you can enjoy

      • September 6th 2017 @ 9:08am
        jameswm said | September 6th 2017 @ 9:08am | ! Report

        That shocking missed stumping – the ball keeping low is why he missed it, and the keeper also misjudged it. It was tough. The miss flew.

        Yes he had some luck but he still dug in well. That is cricket.

        • September 6th 2017 @ 9:27am
          Ross said | September 6th 2017 @ 9:27am | ! Report

          Warner and smith and handscombe were all class yesterday

        • September 6th 2017 @ 11:04am
          Perry Bridge said | September 6th 2017 @ 11:04am | ! Report

          Keeper didn’t stay down long enough – – Wade has been guilty of that in the past. Looks like Wade is becoming a better technician now which is good.

      • Roar Rookie

        September 6th 2017 @ 10:25am
        Disco Stu said | September 6th 2017 @ 10:25am | ! Report

        This drives me mental. Diminishing a good innings because of a dropped catch or missed stumping.

        I’d hazard a guess if you went through the various innings of Bradman, Tendulkar, Ponting etc you’d find more than a few missed chances.

        Do we go back and recalculate the Don’s average every time we can theoretically end one of his innings with a missed chance?

        • Roar Rookie

          September 6th 2017 @ 1:21pm
          Matthew Pearce said | September 6th 2017 @ 1:21pm | ! Report

          That’s clearly the only logical solution, you’re obviously never allowed to benefit from luck in sport.

    • September 6th 2017 @ 8:35am
      Bobbo7 said | September 6th 2017 @ 8:35am | ! Report

      Warner has been a bit lucky, but fair play to him he has done very well since the first innings of the first test. I’ve been critical of Warner and thought he would do nothing this series – but then I thought he would not make it out of T20 cricket so what would I know.

      • September 7th 2017 @ 1:06am
        Don Freo said | September 7th 2017 @ 1:06am | ! Report

        I was wondering that too.

    • September 6th 2017 @ 8:50am
      John George said | September 6th 2017 @ 8:50am | ! Report

      Warner going well

      Handscomb to get a big big score

      Maxwell to get around 5-10 runs

      same as wade

      Carty to get a solid 40

      AUS to pick same XI for Brisbane test and get pumped! Sorry selectors you are vile.

      • September 6th 2017 @ 10:25am
        Hal said | September 6th 2017 @ 10:25am | ! Report

        I doubt we’ll play 3 spinners and 1 fast bowler at the Gabba. Seems the selectors may have gotten it right with this XI in these conditions though

      • Roar Rookie

        September 6th 2017 @ 10:28am
        Disco Stu said | September 6th 2017 @ 10:28am | ! Report

        What is this even about?

        My dead grandmother knows they will not pick this team for Brisbane.

        And do you really, honestly think we will get pumped in Brisbane. 3-4 healthy fast bowlers and a top order full of guys who thrive on Australian pitches.

        • September 6th 2017 @ 10:54am
          Pedro the Maroon said | September 6th 2017 @ 10:54am | ! Report

          Stu, what’s your XI for Brisbane? Who are the 3 quicks?

          • Roar Rookie

            September 6th 2017 @ 11:56am
            Disco Stu said | September 6th 2017 @ 11:56am | ! Report

            The XI

            Cartwright (I like Maxwell and won’t complain if he’s picked)
            Wade (Last chance in Aussie conditions then out if he fails)

            Wicketkeeper is doing my head in. Nevill never scored runs in tests, but when was the last time Wade did either. Carey is untested at test level. Whatever will be will be.

            As for quicks, if all healthy, I’d have to say Starc, Cummins and Hazlewood.

            Starc and Cummins are different versions of good speed with occasional menace. Hazlewood is that deadeye, good line, McGrath-type bowler that’s so effective in Australia.

            Nice to have Pattinson waiting in the wings.

            There’s plenty of steam for Sayers. I’m not anti. We all have our favourites I guess. I just can’t leave out one of the above three for Sayers. I won’t whinge if it were to happen though.

            Starc, Cummins and Pattinson are very good tail end batters too. People are much too keen to conjour up an all-rounder. They are not all-rounders, but you always think they’re a good chance of a quick 50 to change a 400 into a 450 in the blink of an eye.

            Hazlewood can’t bat for shite, but he can sometimes hang around for a 90 minute 5 runs to support someone else.

            • September 6th 2017 @ 12:44pm
              John George said | September 6th 2017 @ 12:44pm | ! Report

              Newsflash: Starc wont be fit in time

              Hazey is injured

              Cummins is ok for now

              Pattinson is injured too

              Some bowling line up

              Hence why SOK will be picked and pumped

              • Roar Rookie

                September 6th 2017 @ 3:50pm
                Disco Stu said | September 6th 2017 @ 3:50pm | ! Report

                I feel like I’m feeding a troll here, but the Ashes are nearly 3 months away. I’m confident one or both of Starc/Hazlewood will be fine.

                In any case, there’s a slight chance on fast Australian pitches that they selectors might opt for, geez I don’t know, Sayers, Bird, Behrendorff, or any one of the other fast bowlers on offer before going for an all-out spin attack.

          • September 6th 2017 @ 11:58am
            jameswm said | September 6th 2017 @ 11:58am | ! Report

            assuming all fit the only question mark is who bats 6 (Cartwright or Maxwell), and I guess whether Wade keeps his spot (excuse the pun).

            The bowlers will be Starc, Cummins, Hazey and Lyon

            • Roar Rookie

              September 6th 2017 @ 12:06pm
              Lancey5times said | September 6th 2017 @ 12:06pm | ! Report

              Given the selectors insistence on keepers contributing with the bat I reckon Wade needs to produce runs in this test to get a gig in Brisbane. The selectors may see a home series, even one as important as the Ashes, as the ideal time to get a new keeper in. Those early Shield roundsare looking mighty important.

              Am I right that we have seen a crucial keeper drop off Joe Root in the past that has cost us big time?

              Have we had official confirmation that Costanza will bat behind Maxwell in this test?

              • September 6th 2017 @ 12:47pm
                John George said | September 6th 2017 @ 12:47pm | ! Report


                They will pick Wade as he is one of the boys in the boys club

                I agree 100% on the early shield rounds for shore

                P.S. see you at the indigenous gathering at Mays Hill on Friday night, my fellow original man 🙂

      • September 6th 2017 @ 11:57am
        jameswm said | September 6th 2017 @ 11:57am | ! Report

        Dear John

        This is what you said 24 hours ago.

        “We will be lucky to get to 300, and that will require Smith to go large

        This test is done”

        You may wish to re-consult your crystal ball.

        • Roar Rookie

          September 6th 2017 @ 12:15pm
          Lancey5times said | September 6th 2017 @ 12:15pm | ! Report

          John doesn’t strike me as the explaining/replying type

          • Roar Rookie

            September 6th 2017 @ 12:22pm
            Disco Stu said | September 6th 2017 @ 12:22pm | ! Report


      • September 6th 2017 @ 1:06pm
        matth said | September 6th 2017 @ 1:06pm | ! Report

        John, based on your extensive knowledge, I look forward to the GOAT opening the bowling at the Gabba.

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