The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has announced the list of 22 probables for the upcoming limited-overs home series against Zimbabwe. Surprisingly, former skipper and wicket-keeper batsman Sarfaraz Ahmed, all-rounder Shoaib Malik and fast bowler Mohammad Amir have been left out of the squad.
The selectors have picked uncapped Abdullah Shafique who is a top-order batsman. Shafique had an impressive run in the recently concluded National T20 Cup for Central Punjab and the 20-year-old has now made a place for himself in the squad.
In ten T20s, Shafique has samshed 358 runs at an average of 44.75 and a strike-rate of 133.08. He has scored a ton and two half-centuries during the course of the tournament.
The squad has been named for the full tour but the board and the selectors will pick the team for T20Is and ODIs later on.
Apart from this, Babar Azam, Fakhar Zaman, Imam ul Haq, Mohammad Hafeez, Shadab Khan, Shaheen Afridi, Imad Wasim and Wahab Riaz are some prominent names who have found a place in the squad.
While Sarfaraz, Malik and Amir have missed missed the bus, Hasan Ali and Naseem Shah were also not considered for the selection as the two players are recovering from injuries.
The National T20 Cup saw some outstanding individual performances.A few leading performers may feel disappointed that they have been unable to break into the squad. But, I want to reassure them that they will remain in consideration for the New Zealand tour and early next year’s home series. All they now need to do is to carry those impressive run of forms in the upcoming domestic competitions,” Misbah-ul-Haq said in a statement released by the PCB.
The series is slated to begin from October 30 when the first ODI takes place in Rawalpindi. The second and third ODI will be played on 1st and 3rd November respectively at the same venue while the three T20Is will be held in Lahore.
The first T20I will be played on November 7 while the second and third would take place on November 8 and 10 respectively.
Full squad: Babar Azam, Haider Ali, Abdullah Shafique, Imam ul Haq, Harris Sohail, Abid Ali, Fakhar Zaman, Mohammad Hafeez, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Rizwan, Iftikhar Ahmed, Faheem Ashraf, Imad Wasim, Rohail Nazir, Shadab Khan, Shaheen Afridi, Mohammad Hasnain, Haris Rauf, Musa Khan, Wahab Riaz, Usman Qadar, Zafar Gohar.