Khawaja ex­pects to be fall guy for Finch

The Pak Banker - - MARKETS/SPORTS -

In-form Aus­tralia bats­man Us­man Khawaja ex­pects to be squeezed out of the top or­der in favour of for­mer cap­tain Aaron Finch when they kick off their World T20 cam­paign against New Zealand next week.

Khawaja scored 33 in an open­ing part­ner­ship of 76 with Shane Wat­son as Aus­tralia cruised to a se­ries-win­ning sixwicket vic­tory over South Africa in Cape Town on Wed­nes­day. Aus­tralia tried dif­fer­ent open­ing com­bi­na­tions in all three matches of the se­ries, with Khawaja and Finch team­ing up in the first in Dur­ban and all-rounder Wat­son and Finch in the fol­low­ing match in Jo­han­nes­burg.

Khawaja has plun­dered runs in all for­mats since be­ing re­called for Aus­tralia's test se­ries against New Zealand last year but only made his T20 de­but against In­dia in Jan­uary.

Finch boasts a fine T20 record, how­ever, and Khawaja said his more ex­pe­ri­enced team mate was likely to be the pre­ferred choice in Steve Smith's team. "Finchy didn't play to­day and he's one of the best T20 play­ers in the world, so we've got a lot of bat­ting depth and strength," Khawaja told re­porters in Cape Town.

"Finchy was there be­fore I was, when I came into the team he was T20 cap­tain. He's been there and done it. I sort of ex­pect him to come back into the team. "Se­lec­tion is part and par­cel of the game," he said. "I've been on both ends of it and I'm just so non­cha­lant about it now. I'm just chilled out."

Aus­tralia were thrashed 3-0 on home soil by World T20 hosts and favourites In­dia in Jan­uary but the South Africa se­ries win was a timely boost, Khawaja said.

"We wanted to go into the World Cup on a win­ning note," he said. "It's al­ways a lit­tle bit tougher when you haven't. The fact that we won is a big bonus. "I think ev­ery­one just about in the squad has con­trib­uted some­what in the last three games, which is nice."

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