Pakistan, on Monday, announced a 20-man squad for their upcoming three-match Test series against England from August 5 to 25. They picked the shortlisted squad from a 29-member touring party.
The return of former captain Sarfaraz Ahmed in the squad along with Fawad Alam and Wahab Riaz highlights the new additions in the squad. Sarfaraz Ahmed was stripped of captaincy and was dropped from the team last year after the loss in the home T20I series against Sri Lanka.
Consequently, he was not a part of the team for the tour of Pakistan and the home series against Bangladesh. He was picked in the touring party as a back-up to wicketkeeper Mohammad Rizwan. The former Pakistan captain recently led the Pakistan White team during their 2nd four-day intra-squad match in County Ground in Derby which ended on July 27.
Rizwan though is likely to get the nod ahead of Sarfaraz, given he performed well in the practice matches, hitting a hundred in the first match played from July 17 to 20. On the other hand, Wahab had sensationally announced his retirement from red-ball format before the tour of Australia. He, however, made himself for the England tour. As far as Fawad is concerned, he has not played a Test since 2009.
“Following the conclusion of two four-day intra-squad matches, Pakistan shortlisted the squad for the three-match Test series against England,” the PCB said in a release.
Azhar Ali has been named the captain of the side while limited-overs skipper Babar Azam is the vice-captain. Meanwhile, the remaining nine players – Fakhar Zaman, Haider Ali, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imad Wasim, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Hafeez, Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Hasnain and Musa Khan – will continue to train with the squad for the T20I series, which will be played at the backend of the Test series.
The first Test will be played in Manchester from August 5 while the 2nd and 3rd Test will be played in Southampton.
Pakistan squad for England Tests:
Azhar Ali (Captain), Babar Azam (vice-captain), Abid Ali, Assad Shafiq, Faheem Ashraf, Fawad Alam, Imam-ul-Haq, Imran Khan Snr, Kashif Bhatti, Mohammad Abbas, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Nassem Shah, Sarfaraz Ahmed (wk), Shadab Khan, Shaheen Afridi, Shan Masood, Sohail Khan, Usman Shinwari, Wahab Riaz, Yasir Shah.