Usman Khawaja – Australia’s stability will serve them well in India
Australia will announce their squad on Wednesday and the fact only a handful of positions are really up for debate, especially in the batting, reinforces Khawaja’s view.
“We’ve played a lot of games in the subcontinent,” Khawaja said at the premier for season two of The Test documentary in Sydney. “Every single player, particularly the batting, has played in the subcontinent numerous times and you take a lot from those experiences.
“Think the stability of this team is a big one, too. Every time I’ve gone to subcontinent I’ve felt like there’s been a lot of chopping and changing, talked about horses for courses back in the day, it’s very hard to win cricket games when that’s happening in my opinion. The stability there has been for this team, at least the last year and a half, think that will put us in good stead.”
Khawaja: Continuity of selection breeds confidence
The tour will also be a significant one for Travis Head who has become a formidable force on home soil but struggled on the two overseas tours last year with 91 runs in seven innings. However, Khawaja believes the environment within the current squad, where players are backed to perform over a long period, gives them the best chance to succeed.
“I’ve been calling for it for a long time,” he said. “Test cricket is hard enough, it’s even harder when it feels like you only have three games to prove yourself. A lot of the young guys you were coming in during the last 10 years probably did feel that way in a lot of respects. Andrew McDonald and Pat are very good at that.”
“You can’t go in with too many preconceived ideas,” he said. “You have to play what is in front of you. It depends what wickets they serve up to what combinations we play and how you play on those wickets as well. Been there a few times, they have been challenging tours. We got pretty close last time we were there, we weren’t too far away. Hopefully a few of us who were there have got some learnings for this time and hopefully we can impart some knowledge on the young guys and have a really successful tour.”
After the final Test against South Africa, Pat Cummins said he expected the squad would provide plenty of options. “I think our squad will have basically all possibilities. It’s a big series, so we want everything at our disposal.”
Possible Australia squad for India tour David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Steven Smith, Travis Head, Cameron Green, Alex Carey (wk), Pat Cummins (capt), Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood, Scott Boland, Ashton Agar, Lance Morris, Mitchell Swepson, Matt Renshaw, Peter Handscomb, Todd Murphy