(left to right) Victoria skipper Peter Handscomb and Tasmania captain George Bailey. @ Getty Images
(left to right) Victoria skipper Peter Handscomb and Tasmania captain George Bailey. @ Getty Images

Victoria and Tasmania will face each other in the summit clash of the JLT One-Day Cup on Wednesday, the last domestic match of the season. On the eve of the match, Victoria skipper Peter Handscomb and his counterpart George Bailey expressed their concern about Cricket Australia’s language around the state one-day competition.

Cricket Australia had termed the event a ‘pre-season’ tournament that will help players prove their potential for possibly a slot in the Australian team for the 2019 World Cup.

However, neither Handscomb nor Bailey have appreciated the comments. “I think saying that this is some pre-season tournament is just wrong,” Handscomb told the Sydney Morning Herald on Tuesday.

“There should be so much riding on this. This is the domestic competition, people are putting their hands up to play one-day international cricket for Australia, and people should take notice of what happens here, so there’s still a lot riding on it. The players understand how important it is, and everyone’s out here trying to do their best.

“I haven’t won one for Victoria. It’s exciting to get out there and hopefully the boys will turn it on again, and we can come away with the trophy.”

Bailey echoed in the same vein. “I think we’ve got a rich history in World Cups, in one-day cricket, and I think the way the one-day competition over a number of years, particularly over those years where we won World Cups, has been really important,” he said.

“It’s worrying, I think if that tournament is just being viewed as [a pre-season tournament], and performances aren’t being looked at in terms of players who dominate this competition, you want them to be getting opportunities to play for Australia, and on that front you want to be playing on the best grounds, at the best possible time, to ensure those performances do mean something, and we continue to perform in the really big one-day tournaments around the world.”