Boof won’t penalise outspoken Khawaja

Australia coach Darren Lehmann says that while he wishes Usman Khawaja had kept his mouth shut to the media, the batsman will not be penalised for expressing his frustrations.

Khawaja was dropped for the third Test against Sri Lanka recently, along with Joe Burns, and the Aussies went on to lose the series three-nil.

Khawaja later said he felt he’d been made a ‘scapegoat’ as none of the other batsmen did very well either. Lehmann said he’d have a word in private about the comments.

The coach said ahead of the Test series against South Africa:  “He is not on the back foot (for selection).

“(But) I will chat to him privately.

“We would rather have these things played out between selectors and players.”

Lehmann was asked whether dropping Khawaja and Burns was the right call, and he said: “Being on the selection panel for the Test match, it was warranted.

“At the end of the day, there were different conditions and those two guys weren’t playing well enough – they averaged eight or seven in two Test matches.

“We had to change something, but that doesn’t affect the summer at home.

“We have to work out what we think the best batting line-up is for the summer.”

The first Test against the Proteas starts on 3 November, before which the Aussies will play in a Sheffield Shield fixture to state their cases.