Misbah-ul-Haq today announced the names of 22 probables for ODI’s and T20’s against Zimbabwe.
Misbah in his press conference said that he has opted for experience in the 50 over format while youngsters have been given an extended run in the T20 format.
Abdullah Shafique, one of the top performers of the National T20 Cup has been included in the squad. Shoaib Malik and Sarafarz Ahmed are the notable omissions.
Misbah said “Abdullah Shafiq has been rewarded for his tremendous potential and performance. He has been identified as a future prospect and, therefore, drafted into the squad as part of his development.”
Pakistan have not played ODIs since the home series against Sri Lanka 12 months ago and the Rawalpindi matches will be part of ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Super League from which the seven top-ranked sides, apart from hosts India, will qualify directly for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023.
“Seniors like Shoaib Malik and Sarfaraz Ahmed have not been picked for this series, but I want to categorically state that their careers are not over by any means as performance remains the only criterion for selection. These are strategic decisions as Shoaib’s absence will provide players like Abdullah Shafiq, Haider Ali and Khushdil Shah better chances of featuring in the upcoming matches,” he further said.
Fast-bowlers Hasan Ali and Naseem Shah were not considered for selection as they are recovering from injuries, but have been advised to play in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy to prove their fitness before they are considered for selection.
The selected players will assemble in Lahore on Wednesday where they will observe a five-day isolation period after Covid-19 testing. Players will play two 50-over games at Gaddafi Stadium and will travel to Rawalpindi on October 26.
The probables for three T20Is will be shortlisted after the ODIs and players unlikely to feature in them will be advised to play in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy third round matches, which will commence from November 6.
Pakistan probables for ODIs and T20Is:
Babar Azam (captain), Shadab Khan (vice-captain), Abdullah Shafiq, Abid Ali, Faheem Ashraf, Fakhar Zaman, Haider Ali, Haris Rauf, Haris Sohail, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imad Wasim, Imam-ul-Haq, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Hafeez, Mohammad Hasnain, Mohammad Rizwan, Musa Khan, Rohail Nazir, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Usman Qadir, Wahab Riaz and Zafar Gohar
Series schedule (ODIs to start 1200, T20Is to commence 1530):
Oct 30 – 1st ODI, Rawalpindi.
Nov 1 – 2nd ODI, Rawalpindi.
Nov 3 – 3rd ODI, Rawalpindi.
Nov 7 – 1st T20I, Lahore.
Nov 8 – 2nd T20I, Lahore.
Nov 10 – 3rd T20I, Lahore.