Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) have announced their 17-member squad for the opening Test against South Africa that is slated to begin from Tuesday in Karachi. Salman Ali Agha, Kamran Ghulam, Abdullah Shafique are players that are left out of the Test squad.
After missing the New Zealand tour due to thumb injury, this will be Babar Azam’s first assignment as captain of the Test side. Nauman Ali and Sajid Khan are uncapped spinners included in the Test squad for Karachi Test. Leg-spinner Yasir Shah is certainly premier spinner for the side in the format.
Uncapped Tabish Khan and Haris Rauf have earned their maiden call-up to the Test squad. Hasan Ali and Shaheen Shah Afridi are premier pace options for the side for this two-match series.
Faheem Ashraf and Mohammad Nawaz are picked as genuine all-rounders for the home series. Pakistan Chief Selector, Mohammad Wasim said that players who consistently performed well in the domestic circuit for past couple of years were considered and picked for the home series.
Uncapped players for the longer format will be given longer run to cement their place in the Test setup. Batting coach Younis Khan will be given the task to work with uncapped batsmen and prepare them well for the international cricket.
Opener Shan Masood, pacer Mohammad Abbas and middle-order batsman Haris Sohail were dropped from the Test squad after not doing well in New Zealand. Leg-spinner Shadab Khan is ruled out of the series due to groin injury sustained during Pakistan’s tour of New Zealand. Pacer Naseem Shah is suffering hamstring injury and was not considered for selection. On the other hand, Hasan Ali delivered spectacular performances in the recently concluded Quaid-e-Azam Trophy and makes his return to the Test squad.
Pakistan’s Test Squad: Babar Azam (captain), Azhar Ali, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Mohammad Rizwan, Imran Butt, Faheem Ashraf, Fawad Alam, Saud Shakeel, Mohammad Nawaz, Nauman Ali, Abid Ali, Sajid Khan, Yasir Shah, Hasan Ali, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Haris Rauf, Tabish Khan.