Former captain Sarfaraz Ahmed has been named in Pakistan’s final 15-man squad for the upcoming T20 World Cup as the PCB makes three changes to the initial squad which was announced on 4 September.
Sarfaraz Ahmed and Haider Ali have replaced Azam Khan and Mohammad Hasnain respectively, while Fakhar Zaman, who was earlier named as a travelling reserve, has been swapped with Khushdil Shah. PCB stated that these changes have been made “taking into consideration player performances and form” of the three incoming and dropped cricketers.
Also, regarding Sohaib Maqsood’s position, a decision will be made after the assessment of the medical team. Maqsood underwent MRI scans for the lower back after the 6 October National T20 match against Northern and missed Thursday’s game against Central Punjab.
Chief selector Muhammad Wasim said: “After reviewing player performances in the highly-competitive National T20 and in consultation with the team management, we have decided to include Haider Ali, Fakhar Zaman and Sarfaraz Ahmed in the squad for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021.
“The three in-form players bring with them wealth of experience and talent, and provide further stability, balance and strength to the side.”
Wasim sympathised with the three players who have dropped from the main squad, but assured them that they’re in the selectors’ scheme for the next T20 World Cup.
“It must be tough for Azam, Khushdil and Hasnain for missing out but they still have a lot to offer in their careers. They are in our future plans as a lot of cricket has to be played post the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 and in the lead up to the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 in Australia,” the chief selector added.
Pakistan will take on India in their opening encounter on October 24 in Dubai. They will then meet New Zealand, Afghanistan, and two other teams who will qualify from Round 1 in the Super 12 stage.
Pakistan T20 World Cup squad:
Babar Azam (C), Shadab Khan (VC), Asif Ali, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Hafeez, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan, Mohammad Wasim Junior, Shaheen Afridi, Sohaib Maqsood, Fakhar Zaman, Haider Ali
Travelling reserves: Usman Qadir, Khushdil Shah, Shahnawaz Dahani