Arnav Chopra ∙ Mar 1 2023, 12:28 PM

Bit Of Cat And Mouse: Usman Khawaja Reveals He Kept The Bowlers Guessing With The Sweep

image-lepm49sfUsman Khawaja (Source: AP Newsroom)

After being bundled out for a meagre total of 109, the Indian side were determined to fight back with some quick wickets early on in the innings. For that very matter, the spin duo of Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja were employed right from the start to decimate the opposition but there was one rock standing in their way.

Left-handed opener Usman Khawaja stood tall to the bowlers batting 147 balls for his gritty 60 where he managed four boundaries before falling to Jadeja while playing a slog sweep to deep midwicket.

However, after the end of the day's play, the batter remarked that he was looking to score runs whenever possible as it was difficult to bat against the new ball. Moreover, he thinks that the track won't be getting any easier to bat on from the next day. 

"I played to my plans. Scored runs whenever there was a scoring opportunity. I was batting with Marnus, good partnership to get. It was tough to bat with the new ball. Not an easy wicket to get runs. It was spinning out there. We will get to know better about the pitch tomorrow. It is hard to tell on Day 1. It was difficult time to bat throughout the time and we're not expecting to get any better. If that's how I can put it,"

Khawaja revealed that he was looking to sweep the deliveries on the leg stump and more than that, he kept it as a surprise for the bowlers to guess whether he would be playing the sweep or not.

"I sweep on my stumps anyway. If the line of an off-spinner goes down the leg, I try to do it. I felt, there was an opportunity. I didn't used the sweep a lot. You keep guessing, I tried to make the bowlers keep guessing as well. A bit of cat and mouse. It is dictated by the wicket. How the bowlers are bowling to you. The plan is always to score runs as long as you're there. I try to do that."

Australia would be resuming the day two on 156 for 4 with Peter Handscomb and Cameron Green on the crease.