Manchester: Australia head coach Justin Langer has confirmed batsman Usman Khawaja will miss the rest of the World Cup with a hamstring strain. Top-order batsman Khawaja suffered the left hamstring injury in Australia’s surprise 10-run defeat by South Africa at Old Trafford on Saturday.
Matthew Wade will replace Khawaja in the World Cup holders’ 15-man squad, subject to confirmation from the International Cricket Council. Khawaja’s absence will be a blow for Australia heading into Thursday’s semi-final clash with old rivals England at Edgbaston.
“It’s such a pity for Khawaja, for someone who’s been so integral to how we’ve been playing,” Langer told Cricket Australia’s website on Sunday. “Like Shaun (Marsh, who broke his arm on Thursday) I feel that sad for him that he’s going to miss the World Cup semi-final. Matthew Wade is coming up, he’s in great form, he’s had a great 12 or 18 months back home but he also just scored two hundred (for Australia A) so he’s in great nick.”
Meanwhile, Marcus Stoinis was hampered by a side complaint against South Africa, an issue which had already sidelined the all-rounder for two group-stage matches. Mitchell Marsh has been added to the squad as cover for Stoinis, who missed Australia’s wins over Pakistan and Sri Lanka before returning against Bangladesh. “Mitch Marsh is going to come on standby for Marcus Stoinis just to see how he comes up. If they have to come in they’ll be ready to step up,” Langer added.