Pakistan News

Wahab, Fawad return for Tests, newcomers Imran Jr, Aamir in T20 squad

Wahab, Fawad return for Tests, newcomers Imran Jr, Aamir in T20 squad

LAHORE: Left-arm fast bowler Wahab Riaz and middle-order batsman Fawad Alam staged comebacks as selectors named squads for the Test series against England and for T20 and ODI series against England and Zimbabwe.

Wahab had missed the last series against Sri Lanka due to injury.

Pakistan will play two T20 Internationals and three ODIs against Zimbabwe in Zimbabwe in the months of September and October, with the tour starting from Sept 24.

Then, Pakistan will host England in the UAE in October-November to play three-Test series followed by T20 and ODI matches.




Medium fast bowler Imran Khan Junior, the leading wicket taker of the recently concluded National T20 contest with 16 wickets, has been included in the T20 squad for his first international assignment.

Surprisingly, two underperformers of the above-named event — Sohail Tanvir and Aamir Yamin —managed to find places in the same side. Sohail had grabbed only three wickets at an average of 57.33 while Aamir had taken just six wickets and scored 56 runs.

It is interesting to note that the PCB did not award Sohail a central contract which had been announced earlier this month for one year. He has been a regular part of the national squad without any significant performance to his credit.

Injury-prone batsman Sohaib Maqsood managed to find a place in both T20 and ODI squads after playing his last ODI against Australia in the World Cup at Adelaide and his last T20 against the same squad in Abu Dhabi last year.

After failing to impress anyone with his performance at the World Cup, Sohaib went unfit and is now trying to stage a comeback.

Pacer Zia-ul-Haq, wicketkeeper/batsman Sarfraz Ahmed (due to performing Haj), and leg-spinner Yasir Shah lost places to Imran and Aamir in the T20 squad.

Hard-hitting Mukhtar Ahmed and paceman Ehsan Adil lost their places in the ODI squad. Ehsan was also dropped from the Test squad as Rahet Ali is included in his place.

All-rounder Fawad Alam is recalled in place of unfit Haris Sohail while the rest of the squad is the same which played the Test series against Sri Lanka.

While Azhar Ali will lead the ODI squad, all-rounder Shahid Afridi and Misbah-ul-Haq are retained as skippers of the T20 and Test squads.

The national selection committee, headed by Haroon Rasheed, also named Pakistan ‘A’ squad for two practice matches against England.

Haroon said, “In the light of Misbah-ul-Haq’s recommendations, we have kept the option open for the 16th player in the Test squad against England, picking up two left-arm spin bowlers namely Zafar Gohar and Mohammad Asghar.

“They will be given a chance against England in practice matches in the UAE prior to the Test matches. Whoever performs betters finds a place in the Test squad.

“Besides that, some budding youngsters have been recommended to be included in the Pakistan camp for the Zimbabwe tour, to be held here from Sept 17 to 20. They are: Rumman Raees, Junaid Khan, Mir Hamza, Hassan Ali, Ziaul Haq, Zafar Gohar, Mohammad Asghar, Iftikhar Ahmed and Faisal Mubashir.

“The selection committee, while picking the various squads kept the following key points in mind:

“To continue the rebuilding process of the Pakistan squad by retaining majority of players who were part of the successful last tour of Sri Lanka.

“Outstanding performers in the recently concluded Haier T20 National tournament were duly rewarded and have been included in the squads.

“Players coming out of injuries are recalled and selected in the squad.

“Anwar Ali has been rested for the T20 series against Zimbabwe due to groin strain but would join the squad for the ODI series in Zimbabwe after going through rehab at the NCA.

“Sarfraz Ahmed will not be part of T20 squad against Zimbabwe as he will be performing Haj.

“Physio Brad Robbinson is occupied in a course in Portugal, hence, he will miss the Zimbabwe tour and join the squad for the England series.”

The squad will depart for Zimbabwe on Sept 24.

Squads:

Twenty20: Mohammad Hafeez, Ahmed Shehzad, Mukhtar Ahmed, Umar Akmal, Sohaib Maqsood, Shoaib Malik, Shahid Afridi (captain), Amir Yamin, Mohammad Irfan, Bilal Asif, Wahab Riaz, Imad Wasim, Sohail Tanvir, Mohammad Rizwan (wicket-keeper), Imran Khan Jr.

ODI: Mohammad Hafeez, Ahmed Shehzad, Azhar Ali (captain), Sohaib Maqsood, Shoaib Malik, Babar Azam, Sarfraz Ahmed (wicket-keeper), Mohammad Rizwan, Immad Wasim, Anwar Ali, Wahab Riaz, Yasir Shah, Rahat Ali, Mohammad Irfan, Asad Shafiq.

Test: Ahmed Shehzad, Shan Masood, Azhar Ali, Mohammad Hafeez, Fawad Alam, Asad Shafiq, Misbah-ul-Haq (captain), Younis Khan, Sarfraz Ahmed (wicket-keeper), Yasir Shah, Zulfiqar Babar, Wahab Riaz, Imran Khan, Rahat Ali, Junaid Khan.

Team management: Naveed Akram Cheema (manager), Waqar Younis (head coach), Mushtaq Ahmed (spin bowling coach), Grant Flower (batting coach), Grant Luden (fielding coach-cum-trainer), Dr Sohail Saleem (physio), Shahid Aslam (assistant manager-cum-coach), Maj Azhar Arif (security manager), Talha Butt (analyst), Malang Ali (masseur).

‘A’ squad: Sami Asalm, Khurram Manzoor, Fawad Alam, Umar Amin, Ali Asad, Iftikhar Ahmed, Usman Salahuddin, Adnan Akmal (wicket-keeper), Mohammed Asghar, Zafar Gohar, Junaid Khan (captain), Ehsan Adil, Zia-ul-Haq, Mir Hamza.

Published in Dawn, September 17th, 2015

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