The Australian cricketer was hoping to play the league in his country of birth, Pakistan
Australian batsman Usman Khawaja is happy to get the opportunity to take part in HBL Pakistan Super League for the first time, as the sixth season of the tournament is set to resume in Abu Dhabi this from June.
While speaking to Cricket Pakistan in an exclusive interview, the Australian cricketer was hoping to play the league in his country of birth, Pakistan, but is still look excited to be part of the competition.
“I am excited. Obviously would have liked to play in Pakistan a bit more. Not to get the opportunity is a little bit disappointing, but Inshallah [God willing] we’ll get to play some cricket soon. We will get to play our games, that’s the main thing and fans will get to watch it on TV. But it would have been nice if it was in Pakistan, but this is the next best thing,” Khawaja said.
“Inshallah I will get more opportunity in future or maybe next year in Pakistan. I have never played in Pakistan because PSL always clashes with our domestic season in Australia. Since now PSL was postponed, I got a chance to come and play in it,” he added.
Khawaja will be representing his city of birth, Islamabad [United], in the PSL, which he last visited a decade ago for his brother’s wedding.
“It is a nice little circle because all my family is from Karachi. They moved to Islamabad one or two years before I was born, as my father was working there. I was born in Islamabad and it is very close to my heart. I have been to Islamabad two or three times since we moved to Australia. It is a beautiful city and very nice to be playing for Islamabad United,” he said.
The 34-year-old isn’t bothered by the prospect of playing scorching heat in UAE as he enjoys playing in warm conditions.
“I like the heat. My parents live in Sydney and I live in Queensland, where it can get quite hot. There is a lot of humidity there. Whereas, it is dry heat in UAE. I have also lived in Saudi Arabia for four or five years, so I know how hot it can get. But luckily, it is only a T20 game, so we will be out there for three hours only,” he said.
Khawaja hasn’t followed HBL PSL closely but always made sure to catch the highlights of matches his friends were playing.
“I have watched the highlights of the previous PSL matches due to the time difference between Australia and Pakistan. I haven’t followed it fully, but I am a cricket lover so I like watching cricket all around the world, be it PSL or IPL,” he concluded.