Usman Khawaja wary of Pakistan’s bowling attack

Usman Khawaja highlighted key area in which Pakistan must excel to achieve success in Australia

Usman Khawaja wary of Pakistan’s bowling attack PHOTO: AFP

Australian opener Usman Khawaja is wary of Pakistan’s bowling attack ahead of the three-match Test series that starts in Perth on Thursday.

"It will be tough. People always want to discard Pakistan but that bowling attack is tough work," Khawaja said.

"Shaheen Shah Afridi is a world class bowler opening up. Then you have (medium-fast) Hasan Ali who has been a stalwart for them for a long time and is very skilful. (Allrounder) Faheem Ashraf is coming down here too and they have got a lot of spinners (including Noman Ali and Abrar Ahmed)

"The biggest thing for Pakistan is whether their batting can hold up in our conditions.

"Perth will be bouncy but I think Melbourne and Sydney will suit Pakistan more, and particularly Sydney which is a bit slower and lower. That is what you want. You want a contest."

Khawaja has achieved a half-century on nine occasions in his 13 innings facing Pakistan in Test cricket, converting three of those innings into centuries. Despite playing against the country of his birth, he emphasized that his approach and motivation remained unchanged.

"All series are special for me whether it is Pakistan, South Africa, West Indies, is Test cricket for your country. I just seem to play well against Pakistan but I go out and play the same way," Khawaja said.

"My dad (Tariq), he obviously grew up in Pakistan and supported Pakistan in cricket and would have been about 40 when we emigrated.

"I am sure for him there is a bit of nostalgia when I play Pakistan. There certainly was nostalgia when I was in Pakistan (in 2022) because growing up I used to hear my dad talk about going to watch cricket games in Karachi at the stadium.

"So me getting a Test hundred in Karachi (with an innings of 160), that was really special. That meant a lot. I love Australia, but I never forget where I came from.

"Some of my dad's heroes were Pakistani cricketers. He talks a lot about Javed Miandad, probably his favourite batsman, and Zaheer Abbas. Even growing up I watched a lot of Australia v Pakistan cricket because my family watched a lot of guys like Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis," he concluded.