In a recent turn of events, left-handed top-order Australian batsman Usman Khawaja has been ruled out of the remaining matches of the ongoing Cricket World Cup due to a hamstring injury which he sustained earlier in the tournament.
Australia head coach Justin Langar confirmed on Sunday that the southpaw will miss Australia’s semi-final encounter against England and will also not be available for selection in case Australia reach the finals. In fact, he is expected to be out of any cricketing action for the next three-four weeks.
Notably, Khawaja picked up this injury when Australia were chasing 326 at Old Trafford, Manchester on 6 July against South Africa. Although he had managed to come out and bat for the second time after retiring hurt in the initial part of the innings he could not help his team cross the winning line.
It was Australia’s defeat against South Africa which implied that they would take on England in the semi-finals since India had already defeated Sri Lanka by then.
Matthew Wade had already been called up as cover for Usman and once the ICC’s Technical Committee approves, he will replace him in the World Cup squad.
Langer expressed disappointment that both Shaun Marsh and Usman could not be a part of Australia’s semi-final clash. However, he was hopeful of Khawaja being fit before the first Ashes test which starts on 1 August.
Besides Khawaja, there is another injury concern for the Kangaroos ahead of their semi-final tie. All-rounder Marcus Stoinis injured himself while throwing a ball from the boundary in the South Africa encounter.
Earlier in the World Cup, the all-rounder had already faced a side strain before passing the fitness test midway in the tournament. In case Stoinis is ruled out too, Mitchell Marsh has joined the defending champions as cover.