Crocked Uzzy not giving up on India Test series
USMAN Khawaja was initially "devastated'' by his latest knee injury but remains optimistic of being fit the first Test of the home summer.
Australia's batting linchpin will see a specialist on Monday and is resigned to being sent for surgery on the torn meniscus in his left knee. He hopes it will not rule him out for the first Test against India on December 6.
"It will not be very invasive (surgery) from what I have heard,'' Khawaja told News Corp Australia after returning from the Test series against Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates.
"The turnaround time is normally quite quick. The first Test against India is what I am aiming for my it just depends on how the knee goes. Everyone is different but it is a very reasonable target.
"Some people come back earlier, some a tiny bit later, but that will definitely be the goal.''
Khawaja tweaked his knee in a pre-match warm-up during the second Test and immediately sensed trouble.
"When it first happened I knew something was wrong. A spike stuck and I heard a decent click. I felt pain straight away.
"I hoped for 20 or 30 seconds the pain would go away but it didn't. I had had the same feeling with the other one so I thought, 'I am just going to walk away here' and went back to the changerooms hoping for the best.
"The next day I was devastated. I tried to hide how I felt it but I think Tim Paine knew. He came up and put his arm around me. I had a lot of mixed emotions at the time.
"I was a bit down because the game was on the line and I was also really looking forward to coming back to Australia.
"One of my goals was to play one-day cricket and I felt I was a big chance of playing this next one-day series (against South Africa).''
Khawaja's lament at his latest injury came after the high of his career-defining 141 in the second innings of the first Test in Dubai, which helped Australia pull an enthralling draw from the jaws of what looked like certain defeat.
"I tried to play it down a little bit at the time because we had another Test to go but it was one of the most satisfying innings I have had, just because a few people have talked a lot about me overseas," he said
"It was really frustrating because Australia had turned to me a couple of times on turning wickets like last year in the Ashes (in Sydney) and I got runs (171). I knew that wicket was tough but I still didn't get the credit because it was not in Asia.
"I also faced Yasir Shah on a roughed up SCG wicket the year before and did not get much credit there (making 79 not out).
"So to do it overseas where I have been dropped a couple of times was really satisfying.''