Ashes 2021-22: Khawaja not certain of selection for Hobart Test despite hitting two tons


Ashes 2021-22: Khawaja not certain of selection for Hobart Test despite hitting two tons

Even after giving a spectacular performance with the bat in the ongoing Ashes 2021-22 game, hitting two tons in both innings of Australia, Usman Khawaja is uncertain about his selection for the Hobart fixture.

Despite dazzling in his return Test with twin hundreds at the Sydney Cricket Ground in the ongoing 4th Test against England, Australia batter Usman Khawaja reaffirmed that he does not expect to be included in the starting XI for the 5th Ashes Test.

Usman Khawaja, 35, who last played Test cricket in the 2019 Ashes, was given the chance to play in the 4th Test in Sydney when middle-order batsman Travis Head tested positive for Covid-19 in the days running up to the match.

The southpaw hit a 138-ball, unbroken 101 on Day 4 of the Sydney Test against England to not only achieve century in both innings but also put his team in a dominating position.

As a result of Head’s outstanding performance in the first three Tests, the team’s management will face a major selection issue ahead of the Hobart match. Khawaja is well aware of this and does not anticipate a berth in the starting XI. Head, who smashed a scorching ton in the first Test, is expected to be eligible for the fifth Test of the Ashes 2021-22.

“I came in here for Travis Head, he’s had a great series and I know the selectors have made a lot of tough decisions in this series and I don’t really expect it to be any different because I scored back-to-back tons. It’s just the way it is. All I’ve done is I’ve had an opportunity for Australia, scored some runs which I am grateful for,” said Khawaja at the end of Day 4.

“The hunger is still there. I’ve shown that I can still score runs at this level if an opportunity does present itself in the future,” he added. Meanwhile, the team management also has an option of replacing Usman Khawaja with under-fire opener Marcus Harris to accommodate Head in the line-up.

On being asked about the same, Khawaja said: “To be totally honest, I’ve batted at number five in this Test match and it was a lot of fun. I got runs but you can’t really compare five to opening. It’s like apples and oranges. I know because I’ve done both of them.”

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