Pakistan has named the 18-man squad for the upcoming three-match T20I series against Kiwis. The Pakistani squad along with the contingent members are already in New Zealand, serving mandatory 14-day quarantine period. A lot has happened since the team has landed in New Zealand with almost a dozen members from the travelling group testing positive for COVID-19. They have also got the final Warning from the New Zealand Cricket (NZC) and government for flouting the rules.
Talat and Sarfaraz are the only changes from the Pakistan side that defeated Zimbabwe 3-0 in November. Notably, all-rounder Hussain played his last T20I against South Africa at Centurion in February 2019 while former Pakistan skipper Sarfaraz returns to the side after missing the Zimbabwe series.
The squad was finalised by head coach Misbah-ul-Haq and captain Babar Azam in consultation with Pakistan Shaheens’ coach Ijaz Ahmed, who also picked his 16-player squad for the four-day match against New Zealand ‘A’, starting from December 17 in Whangarei.
“For the T20Is, we have retained the squad that has been playing together for some time. The squad comprises young, talented and high-performing players, who are determined and eager to make names for themselves and further cement their places in the side,” Misbah said.
“New Zealand boasts some of the best cricket facilities, which are backed by supportive and appreciative crowds. I want my players to make optimum use of the upcoming opportunities by expressing themselves by playing fearlessly every time they take the field. All the players have our backing and support, and all they now need to show is how much belief, faith and trust they have in their own capabilities,” he added.
Here is Pakistan T20I squad
Babar Azam (captain), Shadab Khan (vice-captain), Abdullah Shafique, Faheem Ashraf, Haider Ali, Haris Rauf, Hussain Talat, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imad Wasim, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Hafeez, Mohammad Hasnain, Mohammad Musa Khan, Mohammad Rizwan, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Usman Qadir and Wahab Riaz.