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Pakistan Cricket Board Unveils T20 Squad for New Zealand Tour

On Tuesday, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) revealed the squad for the upcoming T20 series against New Zealand, scheduled for January next year.

Pacer Shaheen Afridi will assume leadership of the T20I side, succeeding Babar Azam. The 17-member squad includes young talents such as Abbas Afridi, Saim Ayub, Haseebullah Khan, and Sahibzada Farhan.

Destructive batsman Azam Khan is also part of the lineup, alongside notable players like Fakhar Zaman, Babar Azam, and Mohammad Rizwan.

The Pakistan cricket team is currently in Australia for a three-match Test series in the ongoing World Test Championship (WTC) 2023-25 cycle, concluding on January 7.

Shaheen recognized as one of the world’s premier bowlers, particularly with the new ball, will have his inaugural stint as captain against the 2021 T20 World Cup runners-up.

Squad

During a press conference, Wahab Riaz, a representative of the team, commented on the squad selection and the team’s strategy, stating, “We’re in a building phase to see which players can fit into these positions [4-7].”

Explaining the exclusion of certain players, Riaz mentioned, “Khushdil Shah, Asif Ali, Haider Ali, Shoaib Malik, Faheem Ashraf were given chances but they couldn’t create that type of impact.”

Regarding the absence of wicketkeeper Mohammad Haris and the injury to all-rounder Shadab Khan, Riaz clarified, “We have rested Mohammad Haris for this series. There were some domestic performers in First Class cricket who we wanted to give a chance and increase our pool of players.” He added, “Shadab Khan is a very important member of Pakistan T20 cricket. Unfortunately, he suffered an ankle injury [during the National T20] and requires two further weeks of rehab.”

Squad:

  • Shaheen Afridi (c)
  • Aamir Jamal
  • Abbas Afridi
  • Abrar Ahmed
  • Azam Khan (wk)
  • Babar Azam
  • Fakhar Zaman
  • Haris Rauf
  • Haseebullah (wk)
  • Iftikhar Ahmed
  • Mohammad Nawaz
  • Mohammad Rizwan (wk)
  • Mojammad Wasim Jnr
  • Sahibzada Farhan
  • Saim Ayub
  • Usama Mir
  • Zaman Khan.

Schedule of Pakistan’s 2024 tour to New Zealand:

First match: New Zealand vs Pakistan, 12 January, Auckland

Second match: New Zealand vs Pakistan, 14 January, Hamilton

Third match: New Zealand vs Pakistan, 17 January, Dunedin

Fourth match: New Zealand vs Pakistan, 19 January, Christchurch

Fifth match: New Zealand vs Pakistan, 21 January, Christchurch.

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