Pakistan squad on Monday left Queenstown for the northern city of Whangarei ahead of the December 17 game against New Zealand A. The 22-member squad also comprises the staff members of the team. Pakistani top-order batsman Imam ul Haq is also part of the team and will train with the cricket players. The medical team is reviewing his injury to decide on his inclusion in the playing eleven.
The Shaheens, formerly known as Pakistan A, are in New Zealand along with Pakistan’s national side for the tour. They are scheduled to play two four-day games and six T20 games against New Zealand A and other domestic sides.
In a major blow to the Pakistan cricket team ahead of the T20I New Zealand series, captain Babar Azam has been excluded from the squad after suffering a fracture in his right thumb during Sunday morning’s practice session. Pakistani skipper suffered the injury a day after Imam-ul-Haq had fractured his left thumb during a throw-down session. In a statement on Sunday, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) said: ‘World’s second-ranked T20I batsman suffered the injury during a throw-down session, following which he was taken to a local hospital where X-rays confirmed his fracture’. The Pakistani skipper will not be attending the nets for at least 12 days, meaning he will not be available for the 18, 20, and 22 December T20Is to be played in Auckland, Hamilton, and Napier, respectively.
Pakistan in New Zealand
Pakistan’s senior national team will travel to Auckland on December 15 to play the first T20I on December 18.
Pakistan squad for New Zealand T20Is: Shadab Khan (captain), Abdullah Shafique, Faheem Ashraf, Haider Ali, Haris Rauf, Hussain Talat, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imad Wasim, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Hafeez, Mohammad Hasnain, Mohammad Rizwan, Musa Khan, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Usman Qadir and Wahab Riaz. Babar Azam (withdrawn due to injury)—APP