Qld v SA, Sheffield Shield, Brisbane, day one October 1, 2012

Assured Khawaja leads Bulls

ESPNcricinfo staff

Day one Queensland 5 for 202 (Khawaja 88) v South Australia

Usman Khawaja wasted little time showing his potential worth to Queensland, compiling a sturdy 88 in the Sheffield Shield match against South Australia as the Bulls reached 5 for 202 on a bowlers' day at the Gabba.

Naming Khawaja's former New South Wales teammate Phillip Hughes in their XI alongside the debutant Sam Miller, the Redbacks were happy to be in the field under cloudy skies on a green-tinged pitch, but were unable to engineer a rush of wickets.

Instead, they spent much of the day watching Khawaja show how to bat in testing conditions, taking his time, cutting and pulling short deliveries from the pacemen, then advancing to attack the spin of the Test spinner - and acting Redbacks captain - Nathan Lyon later on.

Khawaja gave one chance, a difficult catch to Gary Putland at fine leg on 11, but was otherwise assured. He has a particularly strong record against SA, and this innings took his tally to 918 runs at 76.50 in 13 innings.

He looked likely to add to his five centuries against the Redbacks but was ultimately out 12 short, pinned LBW by the swinging mediums of Chadd Sayers, who had also dismissed Wade Townsend LBW in the second over of the match.

The left-armer Gary Putland was another to claim two wickets, including that of the Australia A tourist Joe Burns for 35. James Hopes and the wicketkeeper Chris Hartley will resume on day two with the expectation of further runs.

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  • Christopher on October 3, 2012, 7:05 GMT

    @Rahul_Ashok. I suggest you review Khawajas last 10 matches as shown here on Cricinfo. The statistics paint a very different story. His last 6 x 1st class matches read as follows: vs Kent-19 and 56, vs Yorkshire-3 and 110* described by the Yorkshire captain as 'having played and missed more than the entire Yorkshire side', as well as being dropped in slip twice, vs Northants-16, vs Essex-0 and 6, vs Kent-0 and 53-clearly not the man of the match performance your describing in your blog as one of the 2 last games. At this point his average is below 40 and has been in the 20s for Derbyshire. His 71 and 72* -143 runs, or 26% of his season total in one game, lifted his average to 48. His last 2 List A games are shown here as: vs Sussex-0, vs Kent-7. His 37 vs SA wasn't deemed 1st Class. In this match he played against a pace attack with 21 games between 4 players. He was dropped at fine leg on 11 or this blog would be unnecessary. I wish him well but expect real substance before the hype.

  • Rahul on October 3, 2012, 6:59 GMT

    Well said Meety, that should hopefully help Hyclass understand the flaws in his argument

  • Andrew on October 3, 2012, 1:48 GMT

    @hyclass on (October 02 2012, 07:09 AM GMT) - whilst you talk about the attack being "threadbare" you didn't mention their career performances. At this point in time Putland is arguably our 2nd best left arm seamer in Australia. Putland has a career average of 26.6, with a S/R of 51.0. The remaining two pace bowling specialists have sub 30 averages & are deemed good enough to keep a Test bowler in George out of the side, as well a very promising Richardson. I see no reason why this SA attack would not compete with the 2nd division County teams, the reality is, it is not often that 20 wickets are taken by a side in normal conditions as you regularly get sporting declarations that are not as common in Oz. Coupled with this, in the County game, there is much more emphasis on bits & piece allrounders, when a side scores 400 over there, it is not uncommon to have 6 to 8 bowlers in the innings. This is proven by the low wickets per match England bowlers have compared to Oz, yet great S/R!

  • Mariam on October 2, 2012, 15:28 GMT

    No use trying to talk sense with hyclass, apparently he knows everything already.

  • Christopher on October 2, 2012, 7:09 GMT

    This Sth Australian pace attack has the threadbare total of just 21 games between 4 players to its name including a debutant,a 3 gamer and a 6 gamer. According to this article,this is the kind of sub standard Sth Australian attack against which Khawaja has made almost 1000 runs and 5 of his 10 centuries. Khawaja has just come back from a County stint in these exact conditions. Unsurprisingly,he top scored. Shaun Marsh,about whom I was exactly correct had a similar career record that I highlighted well in advance to a now,well known outcome. Last Feb, I expressed strong misgivings about Khawajas inconsistent trigger movements,likening them to Marcus North's. Khawaja had just won Shield Player of the Year. From that point onwards,he went into a slump that I identified well in advance.The same points were commented upon on Cricinfo by expert commentators during his County stint. Khawaja has a Test average of 29 from 6 Tests.When he succeeds against a class attack,I will cheer-not before.

  • Andrew on October 2, 2012, 2:10 GMT

    May as well pick Cutting to bat @ 1st drop at the Gabba v the Saffas! Top 100 in a session! Murdered them, one SIX went onto the 2nd tier apparently!

  • Shegufta on October 2, 2012, 1:46 GMT

    good knock from Khawaja! hopefuly he'll be selected for the upcoming test matches.

  • Mariam on October 2, 2012, 1:08 GMT

    Well said Rahul_Ashok, bit tough to criticize an innings where the next best score was 40 and given Khawaja lead Derbyshire out of exile in Division 2 and into Division 1 after 12 years. Looking forward to watching Hughes and Cooper bat today.

  • Andrew on October 2, 2012, 0:05 GMT

    @hyclass on (October 01 2012, 14:01 PM GMT) - we often disagree on interpretation of info, & I would say that Ussie had a good season in County. I wonder why you had to say "When his performances are worthy,I will cheer,but not until then"????? I mean nobody needs to have wind blown up their preverbial, but wouldn't it have been better to say, solid knock in trying circumstances, hope he cashes in on better days???? I know you'll say that Khawaja's last County knock was chancey, but in the end of the day he scored the runs, just like yesterday against Sth Oz.

  • Rahul on October 1, 2012, 23:41 GMT

    @hyclass you have to be kidding me mate, Khawaja made almost a century when no other batsman could get even a 50. SA send us into bat on a green pitch in cloudy conditions knowing that batting would be very difficult. If you took the time to watch the game you would have seen that 88 was worth double that score. He just came back from a man of the match performance in the final 2 county games which won Derbyshire their first division title in over a decade and got them into first division. Tough conditions and great knock, Give credit where its due mate.

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