Handscomb plays down Kohli-Smith DRS saga
India captain Virat Kohli may have declared that his friendships with Australia’s players are over following the tempestuous Test series, but Peter Handscomb insists the teams were amicable off the pitch.
Kohli took umbrage during the four-match series following a number of rows with opposite number Steve Smith – particularly in relation to the latter’s attempt to review a decision in the second Test.
Smith was seen looking up to the Australia balcony for advice during the match in Bangalore, his efforts to review an lbw decision quickly rejected by umpire Nigel Llong.
That did not stop Kohli expressing his anger at the Australian skipper, though, and the issue rumbled on throughout the remaining matches, with Kohli declaring his friendships had changed because of the tension following the series.
However, Handscomb – who was batting with Smith at the time – was quick to play the incident down.
"It was perfectly fine off the field, typical Australia-India Test series it’s always going to be hard fought out in the middle – as it should be – just like if it is Australia-England," he told Omnisport at a media day for Yorkshire ahead of his stint in County Cricket.
"Off the field you’re happy to have a chat, you stay in the same hotels, you see them everywhere, it was fine.
"Everyone’s going out there to win a game for their country so when things boil over they tend to be quite noticeable."
Smith came in for particular criticism following the series, but Handscomb had nothing but praise for the 27-year-old, who he says he learned a lot from during their tour.
"The best place to learn with Steve is at the other end, so batting with him has been great," he said.
"Just to see what he’s thinking and how he goes about facing certain bowlers, what his tactics are and what not, obviously I have learnt a lot from him."
Handscomb hopes to continue to develop during his time with Yorkshire as he follows in the footsteps of Darren Lehmann, Glenn Maxwell, Aaron Finch, Travis Head and former coach Jason Gillespie.
The 25-year-old is relishing the chance at Headingley and hopes to "chew the ear off" England Test captain Joe Root when they share a dressing room.
"To be asked to come here was an honour," the Australian added. "I spoke to Boof [Lehmann] a little bit about it and he spoke so highly of Yorkshire.
"We’ve got Jonny Bairstow, Gary Ballance, Joe Root – there are some good players here so I will be trying to bat as long as I can with them and learn a bit off them as well.
"[Root] and Steve Smith are up there with the best batsmen in the world and you can always learn from someone else and I will be looking to chew his ear off now and then!"