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I’m confident of doing well, says Khawaja

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Australia A captain Usman Khawaja, who had reconstructed his left knee after sustaining an injury, today said he worked hard on his game and is confident of doing well against India A in the upcoming unofficial Test series starting on Wednesday.

“I have been training pretty hard and doing everything every cricketer do. I know Pujara did an ACL (Anterior cruciate ligament) reconstruction but he had come back and score lot of runs,” said Khawaja, who suffering a serious knee injury in December last year.

“I am not the only person to have done knee reconstruction. I am confident of how well I will be playing in the series,” he added.

Looking at the coming series, he said: “It is just a chance to play cricket. I am excited and playing in India is always fun. To be honest, I am not nervous but excited.”

Brushing aside talk of grounds men preparing green top, the captain said: “I looked at the wicket and there were still red clay on the surface. I still think it will turn though there are little bit of grass. So, I feel the track will start turning on third day. It is going to be totally different. It will be tough across four days.”

Talking about his team, Khawaja said: “I have told them to keep things very simple. Not to change too much from how they play. Just go out there and be positive. To score a lot you need to bat well for two or three sessions.

“In India runs can come in clusters. You may not score for 15 minutes and suddenly you will be able to get 20 odd runs in space of three overs. It is very different than how we play back home. So on batting point of view I have told them not to change too much from their natural game.”

Meanwhile, left-arm spinner Stephen O’ Keefe, who had played in the Indian Premier League (IPL) for the defunct Kochi Tuskers Kerala, shared his thoughts on bowling on Indian wickets.

“The message is very clear. In Indian conditions the batters are going to sweep more than what we do back home. It can be unnerving at times but I can change my deliveries in different areas. It is going to be great challenge. It is about 4 or 5 years that I was in India and I am excited to be here,” he said.