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Re: A Handscomb looking signing
Posted by: Supporting Middlesex since 1999
Date: 07/11/2019 18:58
Considering Dawid Malan has left Middlesex and we were left to rue our decision to not sign an overseas player for the County Championship in 2019 until Miguel Cummins arrived shortly before our promotion hopes ended, it is great news that the arrival of Peter Handscomb has been confirmed.

However, I remain to be convinced whether our squad for 2020 is stronger than in 2019, as the loss of Malan, Paul Stirling, Ollie Rayner, George Scott and Tom Barber means that the signings of Handscomb and Cummins don’t detract from the fact that our outgoings are more than our incummins incomings, even if the latter three players are ones whose departures I am hopeful we will not rue. Had we managed to make these two signings as well as keep Malan, then I would feel much happier about our recent activity.

After the talk about our players needing to slightly change the language they use in the dressing room, and the talk about Stuart Law’s philosophy possibly differing from Malan’s, it is telling that Law describes Handscomb as “the sort of character who will help create a strong positive environment that will keep moving the club forward”.

If Malan’s attitude didn’t have a positive effect on the rest of our squad, then hopefully Handscomb will do better in that regard. I know that Law has previously said that our youngsters often benefit from having an international batting at the other end, so it would be great if they enjoy batting with Handscomb.

If the relationship between Law and Handscomb can result in the change of attitude that Law demands from our squad, then maybe signing Cummins and Handscomb will be enough to get us to promotion.

Handscomb is an occasional wicket-keeper, so it will be interesting to see if he puts on the gloves for our 50-over campaign, for which he has been confirmed as captain, and in which John Simpson is expected to make few or no appearances due to his participation in The Hundred. It would be nice if the absence of Simmo could give Robbie White and/or Jack Davies a chance to keep wicket, although I suppose those two players already have a good chance of getting into our side just as batsmen considering Stirlo, Malan and Eoin Morgan will not be available for this competition in 2020.

As Handscomb will not be captain in the Twenty20 competition, it will be interesting to see who leads us. Morgan will hopefully be around for most or all of our campaign, but I don’t know if he will be happy to captain the side. Other options include Stevie Eskinazi, Steven Finn or Simmo.

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