Khawaja’s average this season is 11.8. He says he feels ‘really good’
Usman Khawaja reckons he is looking good ahead of his final audition for this month’s first Test.Source:AAP
Statistics may say otherwise but Usman Khawaja reckons he is looking good ahead of his final audition for this month’s first Test against Pakistan in Brisbane.
The classy left-hander hardly set the world on fire in Queensland’s Sheffield Shield draw with Western Australia at the Gabba, striking 32 off 106 balls in the host’s first dig of 411.
It took his Shield tally to an underwhelming 59 runs at 11.80. Yet Khawaja believes the signs are good before he fronts for Australia A’s day-night tour clash with Pakistan in Perth from November 11-13.
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“I felt really good until I got out. It was frustrating,” Khawaja said of his knock against WA.
“I had a rough trot the first couple of Shield games, but that’s Shield cricket.
“The times I knicked off I still felt good. In the grand scheme of things I still feel good. I just haven’t had that big score yet.
“For me it is about trying to get better and hopefully get wins for Queensland plus I have Aussie A coming up - that’s my focus so hopefully I get that big score soon.”
Khawaja is in the mix for what appears to be two Test vacancies in Australia’s top six batting order against Pakistan.
Another contender - his Queensland teammate and ex-Test opener Joe Burns - staked a claim with a lively 76 featuring 11 fours against WA before joining Khawaja in the Australia A line-up.
The tour match looms as a bat off for the first Test with fellow baggy green hopefuls Marcus Harris, Will Pucovski, Travis Head and Nic Maddinson also featuring against Pakistan.
Former Test batsman Shaun Marsh may also be a smokey despite not featuring in the tour match.
The 36-year-old struck an impressive 77 in WA’s first dig of 332 against Queensland.
It helped take his overall Shield season tally to 393 runs at 78.60. Not that 38-Test veteran Marsh was sweating on yet another call-up by national selectors.
“I am enjoying my cricket at the moment. I love playing for WA,” Marsh said. “But to be honest I have not thought about it (Test recall). There are a lot of young players out there playing well.”
Originally published asKhawaja’s average this season is 11.8. He says he feels ‘really good’