Khawaja right to criticise Australia’s selection policy

Klaus Nannestad Roar Guru

By Klaus Nannestad, Klaus Nannestad is a Roar Guru

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    In a recent interview with ABC Radio Usman Khawaja questioned the ‘chop and change’ attitude of Australia’s selectors, claiming that it has created “a lot of instability in the team.”

    While Khawaja’s own interests may have influenced his comments, his point is certainly valid, and should also be considered before and during the upcoming Ashes series.

    In Australia’s top seven, for example, only Steve Smith and David Warner have been assured of their spots in the Test team over the past couple of years. In fact, of the top seven that was selected against New Zealand in Brisbane less than two years ago, only Khawaja, Smith and Warner are likely to start in the first Test against England.

    This period has seen the likes of Usman Khawaja, Shaun Marsh, Nic Maddinson, Glenn Maxwell, Hilton Cartwright, Mitchell Marsh, Callum Ferguson and Joe Burns all be selected and then dropped on at least one occasion.

    It is therefore hardly surprising that such inconsistent selection has coincided with such inconsistent results, with Khawaja himself stating that it is hard to play “consistent cricket if you’re not getting consistent opportunity”.

    In these two years, Australia have at times looked superb, such as that very series against New Zealand, which banished the hurt of the previous Ashes, or indeed in India – where for a while it seemed as though Australia could manage a highly improbable series win.

    But then there have also been some more dire results. These include Australia being whitewashed by a similarly inconsistent Sri Lankan side, and of course their drubbing in Hobart to the hands of South Africa, which alone caused a mass exodus from the side.

    This chaotic approach to selecting also fails to acknowledge Australia’s last Ashes win, where Australia played the same 11 throughout the series.

    This, of course, is partly due to the fact that when a team is playing so well they can afford to carry players who are struggling for form. Not to mention that it seems unlikely Australia’s current bowling line-up will all make it to the Gabba without an injury, let alone get through the entire series.

    Steve Smith Usman Khawaja

    (AAP Image/Julian Smith)

    Yet the consistency in selection also helped bring about results. Chris Rogers is a particularly good example of this. Rogers struggled a great deal in the first three games of the 2013-14 Ashes, and had the series still been on the line he may have been dropped.

    But instead the selectors persevered with Rogers, and he went on to make hundreds in the next two Tests.

    However Rogers’ contribution went beyond those two games, as from that stage to the end of the next Ashes series when Rogers retired, he and Warner formed one of the most successful opening combinations of the time.

    Similarly, Nathan Lyon, one of the few players who has had faith shown in him the past few years, has rewarded the selectors with increasingly consistent performances.

    Lyon has struggled in Asia for much of his career, but in the recent two-match series against Bangladesh, he claimed an incredible 22 wickets. This was likely a result of the cumulative experience he now has in bowling in sub-continent, which is a consequence of his continued selection.

    Yet on the other hand, in the four Tests Australia played in India, and the two they played in Bangladesh, Khawaja only featured in the side once, despite being in good form before the tours.

    Khawaja will, therefore, walk out to bat at the Gabba with little recent Test cricket under his belt, and the knowledge that his place in the side is far from safe. These sort of conditions are far from optimal for, yet they are experienced throughout the squad to varying degrees.

    Australia’s selectors should subsequently show more patience with their team when picking players for the Ashes series and beyond. This does not guarantee a series win, but it does ensure the team performs more consistently, and ceases to be in a constant transitional phase.

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    The Crowd Says (124)

    • October 18th 2017 @ 5:25am
      twodogs said | October 18th 2017 @ 5:25am | ! Report

      Zip your lip Ussy. Doesn’t pay to publicly deride your master.

    • Roar Guru

      October 18th 2017 @ 7:54am
      Chris Kettlewell said | October 18th 2017 @ 7:54am | ! Report

      There is some validity in his comments, but when a player averages 65 at home versus 27 away, and even worse, just 14 in Asia, that’s such a massive disparity that it is surely going to get selectors thinking that maybe they need to pick “horses for courses”. And it’s not just the average, it’s the way he’s gone about it. When Khawaja bats in Asia he looks racked with self-doubt, second-guessing himself at every moment. He really gets that deer in the headlights sort of look about him.

      Unfortunately, he’s also been a victim of the fact that the rest of the batting lineup hasn’t been great in those conditions. As you point out, if the rest of the team is playing well and winning games then you can afford to carry players who are struggling and give them the chance to work things out. In the case of India they had to just try and pick the team they felt was going to be strongest in those conditions. If they were any chance in the series they couldn’t afford to carry anyone. In Bangladesh they lost the first match and the second became a must-win, which resulted in them having to make such harsh calls. Likely if Australia had won the first match Khawaja might have got another chance.

      You say picking and sticking will help a team to perform more consistently, that’s probably correct. Unfortunately, if you are sticking with players who aren’t playing well that’s going to be performing consistently poorly.

      People often point to a situation where a team is dominant and winning and see that they don’t change their team much while the losing team has lots of team changes and then decide that clearly it’s better to have a consistent team. But the team had lots of changes because they were losing, they weren’t losing because of the lots of team changes. It’s inevitable, when everyone is performing and the team is dominating, you are going to have a consistent team, when the team is struggling and lots of players are underperforming, then changes need to be made and will be made.

      I’m a fan of Khawaja, and maybe if he was picked for all Australia’s sub-continental matches in recent times he would have worked out a technique to score runs over there by now, though that’s not guaranteed. But I think when you are a player who’s failed at every attempt on the sub-continent, then it’s up to you to do something extraordinary to work on your game to fix that (like Matt Hayden facing a million balls from the bowling machine on dry pitches and working on his sweep shot until he perfected it, then sweeping India into submission), rather than just complain about selection policies.

      • October 18th 2017 @ 8:49am
        Ross said | October 18th 2017 @ 8:49am | ! Report

        Good analysis but how did it make any sense not to play khawaja in India when he was or best player last summer. That was the series to let khawaja play and show us what he could do but instead Trevor hohns made him miss the one day series in NZ to prepare for the India series and then after dubais warm up camp didn’t even feature khawaja in the warm up match in India let alone the 4 tests. Then finally we bring him in after 8 months in Bangladesh and drop him after one game where everyone fails for the second test which is the best batting pitch of the series. I am sorry but no one can find form after one or 2 games as even Warner failed for many tests in India onlu to fire because we showed him faith

        • October 18th 2017 @ 11:14am
          DaveJ said | October 18th 2017 @ 11:14am | ! Report

          The guy averages about 20 against spin. It would be foolish to pick him. It’s been the same since his first tour of England, wafting outside the off stump at Swann. Last year he got out to straight balls from Duminy and Maharaj on flat pitches at home. aNo excuses. Why would the selectors have thought he could do better against Ashwin and co in India? It’s about time cricket started to be a bit more analytical- in baseball they’re always prepared to take someone in or out of the game if they are weaker, for example, against left handers.

          • October 18th 2017 @ 12:57pm
            Pope Paul VII said | October 18th 2017 @ 12:57pm | ! Report

            He wasn’t dismiss by Maharaj and tonked him for 3 sixes in Perth and was dismissed for 97 by Duminy.

            While he was dismissed by Shamsi for a duck in the second innings at Adelaide they were almost home after he’d scored 145 in first, setting up a win. In that innings he inexplicably failed to get out to Shamsi and Duminy.

            • October 18th 2017 @ 1:27pm
              Ross said | October 18th 2017 @ 1:27pm | ! Report

              Well said pope

              • October 18th 2017 @ 5:33pm
                Mehreen Tariq said | October 18th 2017 @ 5:33pm | ! Report

                I feel that the current selectors and coach do a good job, its only trevor hohns that needs to look at himself closely as he has been the main selector on tour in sri lanka and Bangladesh where khawaja has been mistreated.

            • Roar Guru

              October 19th 2017 @ 8:30am
              Chris Kettlewell said | October 19th 2017 @ 8:30am | ! Report

              Khawaja actually plays spin pretty well IN AUSTRALIA. As do many of the Aussie batsmen. It’s why I often say it’s wrong to say “Aussies struggle against spin”. Aussies struggle in sub-continental type conditions. That more the case than the spin itself. World class spinners get smashed in Australia. In our own conditions out batsmen play them well. There’s not a lot of natural variation here, if the spinner wants it to do something different he has to bowl something different, which means you can pick the ball out of the hand or in the air here in a way you can’t do it over there. So you have to play spin completely differently in the sub-continent than here, which is why playing spin well in Australia doesn’t show that a batsman has overcome those sorts of issues.

              • October 19th 2017 @ 9:59am
                bearfax said | October 19th 2017 @ 9:59am | ! Report

                Well said Chris. Good to hear others see the problem as the conditions not just spin bowling.

              • October 19th 2017 @ 4:17pm
                Ross said | October 19th 2017 @ 4:17pm | ! Report

                Great comments Chris, you actually make a good case and I agree that Khawaja plays spin well at home but all our batsman struggle in sub continent conditions minus smith but some folks here pick on Khawaja for reasons other then cricket because the comments he made were made only a few days back by Steve Waugh too

            • October 20th 2017 @ 5:25pm
              John Erichsen said | October 20th 2017 @ 5:25pm | ! Report

              Hard to use the South Africa or Pakistan series as a critique of Khawaja. He averaged 52.33 against SA, including 64 in the 2nd dig of the Hobart disaster and 66.75 against Pakistan. Thanks for sharing some reality via your response.

          • October 18th 2017 @ 5:05pm
            Stephen said | October 18th 2017 @ 5:05pm | ! Report

            No one here has answered the main questions on how khawaja has been misreably treated. Firstly how does he miss the tour of India after being among our best batsman in the summer for Shaun Marsh who averaged 18. He was also quietly taken out of the ODIs in NZ and Hohns gave the reasoning that we want khawaja to prepare for the India tour but for some strange reason he doesn’t even play the tour game there to show what he can do, if there was anytime to play khawaja in the sub continent it was in the india tour when he was actually in form. Also speaking about ODIs he was rested for the gabba and adelaide ODIs which are two pitches he scores alot in and then just dissapeared when the champions trophy squad was announced. I am sorry but trevor hohns has alot to answer for when it comes to the mis management of khawaja

            • Roar Rookie

              October 18th 2017 @ 6:12pm
              Matthew Pearce said | October 18th 2017 @ 6:12pm | ! Report

              Plenty of explanation right here in the comments section.

              Khawaja averages 14 in Asian conditions. Shaun Marsh was adjudged a superior bat for India, and rightly so. Talk smack about his stats for the tour, but do you believe for a second that Khawaja would’ve pulled off that innings in Ranchi? We’d been another wicket down straight away and left Maxwell to try and fill that role instead.

              Nobody has an issue with horses for courses when it comes to bowlers, so why are batsmen different? When somebody has consistently demonstrated that they’re so impotent in certain conditions that they can’t even make starts, why would you pick them for must-win games?

              You’re talking as is he should have been guaranteed an ODI spot. He’s not the best short-form batsman we have, pretty lucky to make the team at all really with some of the talent we have going around there.

              Khawaja is clearly still regarded as one of our top test bats, he gets picked time and time again after being dropped, which is more than what you can say for many other talented players to represent Australia over the years. Perhaps he should follow the examples of some of them, who have been treated more harshly but don’t feel the need to carry on like this.

              • October 18th 2017 @ 11:10pm
                Ross said | October 18th 2017 @ 11:10pm | ! Report

                Matthew you are damn right khawaja would have done better then marsh average of 18, this is the point that even Shaun got 4 tests in a row and khawaja is lucky to get one. If we gave him the full India series khawaja would have come out strong but we never give him that chance. And he is actually a better one day batsman then test as he has been the highest domestic run scorer over the last 4 years so yes he should get a proper shot at one day cricket and should not have been taken out is. Sneaky fashion as trevor hohns did to him after the nz tour

              • Roar Rookie

                October 18th 2017 @ 11:54pm
                Matthew Pearce said | October 18th 2017 @ 11:54pm | ! Report

                Really? A previous high score of 26 and an average of 14, and you think he would’ve done better? Mate, I like him, but he’s got no-one to blame but himself for not doing well. He looks like a deer trapped in the headlights when he’s playing spin.

                You don’t know that he would’ve come out strong either, just as likely he’d have completely failed. Again, less than sympathetic when he’s been treated better than most other international representatives but still has the nerve to carry on. Besides, “even Shaun” has been one of our best players in Asia, he averages 48 there.

              • October 19th 2017 @ 10:01am
                Ross said | October 19th 2017 @ 10:01am | ! Report

                Matthew how about if you played and I as selector hohns give you one game in Sri Lanka then drop you for the best batting pitch and then rest you for 8 months and then give you one game in Bangladesh and then make you miss the game with the flattest pitch, let’s see what your average after that is haha

              • Roar Rookie

                October 19th 2017 @ 10:45am
                Matthew Pearce said | October 19th 2017 @ 10:45am | ! Report

                Two games in Sri Lanka. And the “best” batting pitch still led to a collapse. He wasn’t rested for 8 months, he played the whole home summer. Contributed nothing in the one game he played in Bangladesh. And again, the “best” batting pitch was still very hard to score runs on. Needs to demonstrate that he can even just pretend he knows what he’s doing over there. Anything else need clarifying?

              • October 19th 2017 @ 4:20pm
                Ross said | October 19th 2017 @ 4:20pm | ! Report

                MAtthew if you watched the Sri Lanka series Khawaja was dropped for Moises for the third game on a pitch out guys ended up scoring 500 odd and Sri Lanka did the same, then again Trevor hohns did the same in Bangladesh where Khawaja is dropped for second game which is the flattest pitch of the series, perhaps watch a bit more cricket mate haha. And yes Khawaja was rested for 8 months, after being our best batsman last summer he was surprisingly left out of the nz
                Tour with hohns saying it was for prep for the India tests but he got left out of those tests on march too and then no game till September, any thoughts on that disgraceful treatment of Khawaja mate

              • October 20th 2017 @ 1:12pm
                Stephen said | October 20th 2017 @ 1:12pm | ! Report

                THE WINNER BY KNOCKOUT BETWEEN MATTHEW AND ROSS IS ROSS. WELL DONE ROSS 🙂

              • Roar Rookie

                October 20th 2017 @ 1:25pm
                Matthew Pearce said | October 20th 2017 @ 1:25pm | ! Report

                Regurgitating the same debunked arguments, all caps lock, likening to a fight… ah, the maturity.

              • October 20th 2017 @ 10:36pm
                Ross said | October 20th 2017 @ 10:36pm | ! Report

                Matthew you failed to answer my last comments, hard to argue against the fact that Khawaja has been mis treated badly by Trevor hohns

        • October 18th 2017 @ 12:16pm
          George said | October 18th 2017 @ 12:16pm | ! Report

          Well said Ross.

      • Roar Guru

        October 18th 2017 @ 1:19pm
        The Bush said | October 18th 2017 @ 1:19pm | ! Report

        Your chicken and egg discussion has some merit Chris, but the reality is that if you back talented young batsmen, they’ll usually prove you right in the long run.

        All Khawaja is asking for is the same kind of patience shown to Warner. Until he’s tour of Bangladesh, he was the owner of a rather pathetic Asian record. Even now the gap between his home and away record remains significant. Warner has had two tours of India, a full tour of Sri Lanka and now a full tour of Bangladesh to work it out. And it now appears the selectors may be rewarded in the long run. The same was with Warner in ODI cricket, his performances were mediocre until his breakthrough year last year.

        Khawaja is the classiest batsmen we have outside of Warner and Smith. He has proven that he can bat almost to their level in Australian conditions, so presumably he’s in the ball park of their talent. He should have been afforded the same patient that we showed Warner.

        It is actually kind of sad to reflect on the fact that if we’d just backed Khawaja from 2013, we might well have three world class batsmen instead of just two.

        • October 18th 2017 @ 11:12pm
          Ross said | October 18th 2017 @ 11:12pm | ! Report

          Spot on bush, he is still a world class batsman and how he has remained as good given the treatment he has had is amazing

        • October 19th 2017 @ 2:24am
          Don Freo said | October 19th 2017 @ 2:24am | ! Report

          “All Khawaja is asking for is the same kind of patience shown to Warner.”

          Did Khawaja mention Warner? I missed that. I’d say that could be a reason why he misses. A whinge doesn’t bode well for team play.

          By the way, does Ussie seem fat to anyone? He seems to have porked out big time.

          • October 20th 2017 @ 12:48pm
            George said | October 20th 2017 @ 12:48pm | ! Report

            Body image jibes now? Scrambling for credibility out west…

        • Roar Guru

          October 19th 2017 @ 8:40am
          Chris Kettlewell said | October 19th 2017 @ 8:40am | ! Report

          But as I pointed out, Warner’s “rather pathetic Asian record” was still twice as good as anything Khawaja had managed, and included one century to that point. Khawaja’s top score in Asian conditions is 26.

          And yes, you point out Warner’s struggles, unfortunately, they also don’t work well for Khawaja. If you’ve got multiple struggling batsmen, you can’t just stick with all of them of you’ll continue to get smashed. So they could probably only afford to carry one of Warner and Khawaja, and while Warner also struggled, his struggles have been nowhere near as bad as Khawaja’s, so if you can only pick one, Warner is the one who gets picked.

          It’s like the joke about two guys seeing a Lion and one bends down to put on his running shoes. The other says, “you’ll never outrun the Lion”, to which he replies, “I only need to outrun you”. In some ways, Warner was the better of the two struggling batsmen, so he’s the one who gets the more chances. As mentioned elsewhere, if the team is winning despite the struggling player, they can afford to carry them, if they aren’t, or there are too many struggling players, then at least one or two of those struggling players will likely get dropped.

          But it’s also about more than just stats. Just look at body language. Warner continues to just try and bat through it seemingly confident that eventually the runs will come. Khawaja looks like a deer in the headlights. Now, maybe you can blame that on him feeling like one error and he’ll get dropped, but that’s something he needs to work out how to overcome if he wants to get a chance.

          • October 19th 2017 @ 4:22pm
            Ross said | October 19th 2017 @ 4:22pm | ! Report

            Mate Warner bats though it bexsiee he knows he is guaranteed a start in the team, Khawaja knows on the other hand that he has one game max, put Warner in those conditions where he knows he has max one game in Asia and see how well he does or any batsman for that matter

            • October 20th 2017 @ 12:49pm
              George said | October 20th 2017 @ 12:49pm | ! Report

              Indeed. Warner has zero pressure on him,

        • October 19th 2017 @ 5:48pm
          Alex L said | October 19th 2017 @ 5:48pm | ! Report

          Warner at least showed something when he played in the UAE against Pakistan though where he made the only Australian hundred of the tour, and appears to have at least some plan against spin even when he performs poorly.

          Khawaja on the other hand has never showed any ability in the subcontinent, and plays spin like he’s completely unsure of what to do.

        • October 20th 2017 @ 5:55pm
          John Erichsen said | October 20th 2017 @ 5:55pm | ! Report

          Khawaja was harshly dealt with in the 2013 Ashes series. He made 54 in the 2nd innings on a Lord’s minefield, and given out caught off Swann when he missed the ball by 6 inches in another innings. People screamed about how Phil Hughes was poorly treated by selectors. Khawaja was given far less opportunities to cement his spot than Phil. Khawaja was dropped after his third test, dropped again after his 6th (despite outscoring Hughes and Hussey in the NZ series) and dropped again after his 9th (2013 Ashes). He then averages 152 v New Zealand, 100 v West Indies and almost 70 in New Zealand. Dropped after two poor tests in Sri Lanka, returns to the team and makes 581 runs @ 58.1 v Sth Africa and Pakistan. Isn’t picked for the Indian tour and dumped again after failing in the first test in Bangladesh. About to be selected for his 25th test match, Khawaja will be starting his 7th tour of duty as an Australian test player. Hard to play good spin bowling on turning wickets when you are looking over your shoulder for the selector’s knife. Could Khawaja have made dropping him in Asia a tougher decision? Of course, he could. A couple of decent scores would have done that. Not picking him in India leaves us wondering if that was his time to turn it around. If it was, it has now passed and i doubt we will ever see him selected for a test in the subcontinent again. Of course, if our selectors and admin weren’t total idiots, they would have given our test side a better preparation for the 2016 series in Sri Lanka. Khawaja in brilliant form didn’t adjust fast enough, although he scored plenty in the one lead up game, played on a green grassy pitch that looked nothing like the dry, barren test pitches served up.

          • October 20th 2017 @ 10:39pm
            Ross said | October 20th 2017 @ 10:39pm | ! Report

            Wow John Erichsen, that’s the best comment I have ever read on the roar, you went back a few years and I forgot how badly Khawaja was treated throughout his career, fantastic mate

    • October 18th 2017 @ 8:06am
      qwetzen said | October 18th 2017 @ 8:06am | ! Report

      Selectors of a middling to poor team can’t win. If they drop non-performers they get criticised for “chopping and changing” and if they don’t drop them they’ll get criticised for that.

    • October 18th 2017 @ 8:23am
      Basil said | October 18th 2017 @ 8:23am | ! Report

      You realise he wouldn’t be dropped if he didn’t bat like a no11 in Asia?

      • October 18th 2017 @ 12:17pm
        George said | October 18th 2017 @ 12:17pm | ! Report

        Well, Warner wasn’t dropped.

        • October 18th 2017 @ 12:50pm
          Basil said | October 18th 2017 @ 12:50pm | ! Report

          Like I said, You realise he wouldn’t be dropped if he didn’t bat like a no11 in Asia?

          • October 19th 2017 @ 9:54am
            George said | October 19th 2017 @ 9:54am | ! Report

            Yes he would. UK is always the scapegoat.

            • Roar Rookie

              October 19th 2017 @ 10:46am
              Matthew Pearce said | October 19th 2017 @ 10:46am | ! Report

              He wouldn’t be the scapegoat if he could actually make it to double figures.

              • October 19th 2017 @ 4:23pm
                Ross said | October 19th 2017 @ 4:23pm | ! Report

                Hard to make it to double figures if you can’t get more then one game at a time, even Shaun marsh got 4 games in a row in India and then failed, Khawaja can only dream of that

    • Roar Guru

      October 18th 2017 @ 8:28am
      Giri Subramanian said | October 18th 2017 @ 8:28am | ! Report

      Picking batsmen based on where you play is never a good idea but again Khawaja has only himself to blame. His performances in Asia hasn’t been good and his failure in the first test against Bangladesh was probably the final nail in the coffin. It is easy to stick with a non performing player when a team is winning but again Australia haven’t been winning many games in Asia to stick with players who are failing. Warner’s position in the team is different as he along with Smith is the most experienced Australian bat. Him getting a longer rope makes sense.

      Nathan Lyon cannot be taken as example as well as he is Australia’s premier spinner with 250 test wickets. Shane Warne kept failing in India every time he played tests there, doesn’t mean Australia would drop him if he is available.

      • Roar Guru

        October 18th 2017 @ 11:38am
        Chris Kettlewell said | October 18th 2017 @ 11:38am | ! Report

        Probably also with Warner, he’d shown back in the Pakistan series in the UAE that the potential was there for him to bat in those conditions and do well, so while he’d struggled since then, there was a sign the something else was possible. Plus, Warner’s struggles in Asia were to the tune of only averaging around 28 or so. Khawaja’s struggles in Asia amassed to an average of around half that.

        Add that to the fact that Warner still went out to bat positive that things he’d worked on could mean this could be the innings it turned around, and he tended to bat reasonably positively. Khawaja on the other hand tended to look like a deer in the headlights when he got out in the middle, racked with self-doubt, and looking like he had no idea what to do.

        So there are many, many reasons why it was 100% reasonable that the selectors stuck by Warner in those conditions a lot more than they did with Khawaja. I’m a fan of Usman. He’s a good batsman. But nothing about the way he bats in the sub-continent inspires any confidence.

        So I go back to my earlier comment. The selectors can’t just stick with a team where lots of players are struggling. It’s never going to happen. If the team is winning in spite of one players struggles, they can be carried a bit and given a chance to work it out, but if not, then changes will need to be made. If Australia won that first match in Bangladesh then Usman might have played the second test. But the moment that one because a must-win, tough changes needed to be made.

        • October 18th 2017 @ 11:46am
          Ross said | October 18th 2017 @ 11:46am | ! Report

          Guys you know very well that 99% of people were on warners back by the Bangladesh tour because he had failed in India and Sri Lanka prior to that and potential to play or looking good doesn’t count. But we rightly stuck with him and look how he delivered. This is what khawaja is saying for himself and others that faith must be shown to our best batsman, I mean can someone answet me this that how did a guy who averaged in the 80s last summer didn’t play in march for the India series and then gets dropped one test after 8 months of no cricket. Even the great Mike Hussey and Steve Waugh spoke out on this saying we should leave class players like khawaja in becaur they are better judges then us and recognise that a guy like khawaja deserves more then just one game. Also interesting to note that Trevor Hohns who was selector on duty dropped khawaja both in sti Lanka and Bangladesh for the best batting pitch and for the all rounder who never ended up bowling

          • October 18th 2017 @ 12:19pm
            George said | October 18th 2017 @ 12:19pm | ! Report

            It’s about perception – Warner is considered ‘too classy’/indispensable whereas Khawaja never has been.

          • October 18th 2017 @ 12:37pm
            BurgyGreen said | October 18th 2017 @ 12:37pm | ! Report

            They dropped Khawaja because they were desperate to compete in India. We couldn’t afford the attitude that some players “deserve” chances. They picked the batsmen who they felt would be most likely to score runs straight up, in that series, not the next time they toured Asia. And I think, for the most part, it worked (misguided selections like M. Marsh aside). Warner got in because he’d played good innings in spinning conditions before, even though his overall record wasn’t great. Khawaja didn’t play because he had flopped every single time he’d played in Asia. They made the not-unreasonable assessment that S. Marsh was more likely to score runs in India.

            • October 18th 2017 @ 5:09pm
              Stephen said | October 18th 2017 @ 5:09pm | ! Report

              Absolute rubbish decision not to play khawaja in India, Shaun marsh who replaced him averaged 18 for the series so it was a rubbish call not to play our most in form player from the summer. Then when we do give him a chance in bangladesh its for one test only where all batsman minus smith fail on a pitch which was investigated by the ICC for its quality and Mr.Hohns drops khawaja for the second test for a flat pitch which has the most runs in it for a allrounder in Hilton who bowls 4 overs in the match, this is disgraceful handling of khawaja by Trevor Hohns

              • Roar Guru

                October 19th 2017 @ 8:45am
                Chris Kettlewell said | October 19th 2017 @ 8:45am | ! Report

                I do agree to an extent. But even averaging 18, S Marsh scored two half-centuries, while Khawaja’s top score in 5 Asian tests is 26. And I think that’s part of the worry. He’s never played a single innings to even give a hint that he could work out how to score runs in those conditions. And when the selectors know there aren’t any real second chances, that they are going against a strong team in conditions that suit them perfectly and are really foreign to all our players, they make the call. Would Khawaja have come good and played a match-winning innings at some point if given a chance? Maybe, but he also may have been out for single figure scores every innings. We don’t know.

                The important thing for someone in Khawaja’s position is to take any chance he’s given. If you get given one test against Bangladesh, you need to take that opportunity and score some runs. Because you know you aren’t going to get a lot of chances.

              • Roar Rookie

                October 19th 2017 @ 9:10am
                Matthew Pearce said | October 19th 2017 @ 9:10am | ! Report

                Instead of solidifying his position in Bangladesh, he got run-out second ball in the first innings and played an unnecessary shot in the second, for a total match contribution of 2 runs from 8 deliveries. Is that supposed to be confidence-inspiring? I’d have preferred Chris Martin there.

                Marsh produced two fifties, including a match-saving (and potentially series-winning) knock at Ranchi. Khawaja would never have come close to pulling that off.

              • October 19th 2017 @ 9:56am
                George said | October 19th 2017 @ 9:56am | ! Report

                Khawaja even gets left out of warm-up matches. He barely has a chance to get to grips with the conditions.

              • Roar Guru

                October 19th 2017 @ 12:56pm
                Chris Kettlewell said | October 19th 2017 @ 12:56pm | ! Report

                It would be good for him to get warm-up matches. Unfortunately, there don’t tend to be many these days. In Bangladesh they didn’t have one at all, and in India there was only one. (Though for the India tour they did a lot of pre-tour practice work in Dubai prior to flying to India and Khawaja was involved in all of that!)

                If you want to give all your batsmen a chance in warm-up matches you really need to play 3 warm-ups, not just one. However, I think one of the reasons they went to the UAE instead of playing more warm-up’s in India was that they tend to get green pitches and opposition full of fast bowlers in warm up matches for tests played on dustbowls against spinners.

              • October 19th 2017 @ 4:26pm
                Ross said | October 19th 2017 @ 4:26pm | ! Report

                Matthew Pearce you are just rubbishing on Khawaja now mate, how about you answet this, despite being our best domestic one day batsman for the last 4 years he misses the one day games in Adelaide and brisbabe and then missed nz series because Trevor hohns wants him ready for India. Then he misses the Tour game and all 4 tests in India for Shaun marsh who averages 18 in 4 consecutive tests. Khawaja is bough back for Bangladeshi 8 months later with no cricket practice and gets dropped after 1 test, if that’s not discrimination I don’t know what is

            • October 18th 2017 @ 5:34pm
              Mehreen Tariq said | October 18th 2017 @ 5:34pm | ! Report

              Worst decision in the world not to play usman in India, he is a world class player

            • October 18th 2017 @ 5:34pm
              Mehreen Tariq said | October 18th 2017 @ 5:34pm | ! Report

              Worst decision in the world not to play usman in India, he is a world class player

              • October 18th 2017 @ 11:13pm
                Ross said | October 18th 2017 @ 11:13pm | ! Report

                Welcome to the roar mehreen , good to see some female participation here 🙂

    • October 18th 2017 @ 8:53am
      Ross said | October 18th 2017 @ 8:53am | ! Report

      Warner got 8 tests in a row before he fired in Bangladesh , even Shaun marsh got 4 tests in a row in India, why is khawaja not given more then one test and both in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh he was dropped for the mAtch which had the easiest batting conditions by Trevor hohns. Like mike Hussey said that class players like khawaja find a way to score if we can just give them some time or even a full series but in his case he can’t even fail in one game without getting dropped and that’s absurd selection

      • Roar Guru

        October 18th 2017 @ 11:50am
        Chris Kettlewell said | October 18th 2017 @ 11:50am | ! Report

        It’s all about results. If the rest of the team was doing well enough to be able to carry a struggling player, then that player would get more chances. When you look at the Bangladesh series, it’s a 2 test series. If Australia won that first match, Usman plays the second, but they lost, making the second test a must-win. So tough selection calls will be made in that situation.

        And yes, people keep pointing to Warner, but even through that lean trot in Asia, Warner’s batting average in Asia was still 28 or something like that. That’s not good, but it’s still double Usman’s average of around 14 in Asia. Usman’s struggles there are on a whole different level to Warner.

        Marsh only averaged 18 in that India series, but he got 66 in the first innings of the second test, which was probably enough to get him to the third test, and then he managed 53 in the second innings there which was probably just enough to get him to the fourth. In contrast, Usman’s top score in 5 Asian tests is 26. So he’s never played even one innings to give the selectors some inkling that maybe, given more of a chance, he could score consistent runs over there.

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