The secret of success for Usman Khawaja is praying, it is what keeps him calm and composed during the tough and stressful situations in his career.
“I pray. That’s what keeps me centered. The number one most important thing in my life is religion,” he told ESPNCricinfo in an interview.
“The game can be quite tough at times and stressful and emotional,” he added.
The Islamabad-born Usman Khawaja became the first Muslim to wear the Baggy Green (the green cap that Australians wear in test matches).
The Australian opener recalled the painful time in 2014 when he suffered a brutal knee injury just after the saddening demise of his teammate and friend, Phillip Hughes.
“We obviously lost Hughesy and I did my knee in the space of two weeks, so it was a pretty rough time,” he said.
Usman Khawaja didn’t have a flourishing start to his career probably because he tried to perform out of his skin and that failed him.
However, the tough patch he suffered in 2014 made him a stronger person, “It sort of happens when something as big as what happens a couple of years ago with Hughesy happens. I think everyone took it a different way, everyone finds different aspects, and that was probably a big one for me.”
After getting fit from the knee injury that kept him out for six months, Khawaja came out as a completely different performer, he scored 174 and 9 runs not out against a strong New Zealand team on his test comeback.
Later, he captained the Australia A team on a tour to India and performed consistently. Khawaja also found a place in Australia’s T20 side after having a phenomenal run in the Big Bash League playing for Sydney Thunders. He piled up 345 runs at an average of 172.5, his 70 runs off 40 deliveries in the final proved to be match winning for his side.