Australia batter Khawaja stranded amid visa delay ahead of India Test tour

By Sports Desk February 01, 2023

Australia batter Usman Khawaja is stranded in Sydney awaiting visa approval to join his team-mates for their Test tour in India this month.

The top-order batter was due to fly out with the rest of the squad across Tuesday and Wednesday amid a series of staggered flights.

But Khawaja remains in New South Wales amid issues with his visa in relation to his roots in Pakistan, the country of his birth.

The 36-year-old was born in Islamabad, and has had prior issues in attempting to enter India to play cricket.

In 2011, he was blocked from securing a visa for the T20 Champions League for New South Wales before the Indian high commission intervened.

Khawaja took to social media to poke fun at his situation shortly after his team-mates departed for India, where Australia are due to contest the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.

He has played multiple times in the country in the past, including with IPL outfit Rising Pune Supergiant in 2016, and scored two centuries during an ODI tour in 2019.

Khawaja enjoyed a remarkable 2022, earning a recall to the red-ball squad where he top-scored with 496 runs during their first tour of Pakistan since 1998.

He was named in the ICC Test Team of the Year alongside team-mates Pat Cummins, Marnus Labuschagne and Nathan Lyon, as part of a leading four selections.

Australia begin their four-match Test series on February 9 at Nagpur's Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium, with games in Delhi, Dharamshala and Ahmedabad to follow.

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