Pakistan Cricket Team updated squad for ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 announced
Pakistan had to force one change in their squad as Naseem Shah got ruled out of the entire World Cup.
After the 1992 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, Pakistan cricket team failed to shine on the biggest stage in world cricket. Always considered the dark horse in every ICC event, Pakistan will now have an upgraded tag as they will be entering the tournament as among the favourites. Pakistan Cricket Board announced their World Cup squad on September 22. They had to force a big change from their Asia Cup squad as Naseem Shah injured his shoulder against India in the super 4 round of Asia Cup 2023.
Pakistan to take extra spinner along
Hasan Ali has replaced Naseem Shah in Pakistan’s World Cup squad. Hasan Ali will accompany Shaheen Afridi, Haris Rauf, and Mohammad Wasim Junior in the pace bowling attack. Naseem Shah’s injury will be a set-back for Pakistan team, as the trio of Shaheen, Haris, and Naseem had a lot of success playing together. Pakistan chief selector Inzamam Ul Haq announced one more change in their squad as they brought in Usama Mir as an extra spin bowling option for India.
Indian conditions will assist spinners, and Pakistan will be playing most of their matches on spin-friendly venues. They will play in Hyderabad, Kolkata, and Chennai for a major share of their games. Babar Azam will be leading the side, and spin all-rounder Shadab Khan will be his deputy in the leadership role. Pakistan team under Babar Azam’s leadership had a great run in the last two ICC events, as they were once the front-runners to lift the championship.
Babar Azam showed promise as skipper
They almost came close in the T20 World Cup 2022 in Australia but lost against England by a narrow margin. Babar Azam-led side will have huge expectations on their shoulders as the conditions are not alien to them and they have much better balance in their squad. Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Mohammad Rizwan, Salman Agha, and Iftikhar Ahmed will be taking up the role in the Pakistan batting-order, along with skipper Babar Azam. Mohammad Nawaz and Abdullah Shafique will be back in the 15-members squad.
Pakistan had a disappointing end to their Asia Cup 2023 campaign after suffering a last-ball defeat against Sri Lanka in the super 4 round. Pakistan will be playing their two warm-up games against New Zealand at Rajiv Gandhi Stadium in Hyderabad on September 29th and then against Australia at the same venue on October 3rd. They will commence their league round campaign against Netherlands in Hyderabad on October 6. Pakistan will be travelling less as they have their games scheduled at selected venues.
Pakistan squad: Babar Azam (c), Shadab Khan, Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Abdullah Shafique, Mohammad Rizwan, Saud Shakeel, Iftikhar Ahmed, Salman Ali Agha, Mohammad Nawaz, Usama Mir, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Shaheen Afridi, Mohammad Wasim.
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