Usman Tariq Khawaja was born on 18 December 1986 in Islamabad, Pakistan. His family emigrated to Australia when he was 5 years old. He is the first Muslim cricketer to play for Australia in Test cricket.
In 2008, he made his debut in first-class cricket where he represented the New South Wales team against Victoria. Khawaja impressed in the 2009-10 Sheffield Shield tournament by scoring three centuries. After that, in June 2010, he was picked up by Cricket Australia to tour England to play against Pakistan in a two-Test match series.
He, however, played his debut Test in the final match of the Ashes series against England in Sydney. Coming in as a replacement for an injured Ricky Ponting at the No.3 position, he scored 37 and 21 in the first and second innings. Though the knocks were brief, the 33-year-old impressed the Team Australia’s selectors with his confidence and class.
But during the subsequent Test matches, he couldn’t convert his promising starts into knocks of substance. In March 2013, Khawaja was suspended before the third Test against India along with his teammates, Mitchell Johnson, James Pattinson, and Shane Watson, for a breach of discipline.
He was again recalled in the 2013 Ashes series where he played in the second Test match in place of Ed Cowan.
Happy Birthday Usman Khawaja – One Of Australia’s Premier Batsmen
His best came in November 2015 when he scored 174 against New Zealand in the first Test of the series. Following that, he scored 4 centuries in only six Tests. The Pakistani-origin player made his ODI debut against Sri Lanka in January 2013 and T20I debut against India in January 2016.
To date, Khawaja has scored eight centuries in Test matches and two in ODIs.
He represents Queensland in Down Under’s domestic cricket and has played for Derbyshire, Lancashire, and Glamorgan in English county cricket.
In IPL, he only played one season, representing Rising Pune Supergiants in 2016.
Khawaja, who is also a qualified pilot, is fighting to get back into the Aussie side after Marnus Labuschagne’s prolific form with the bat in 2019.