Haris Rauf returns; Mohammad Amir, Imad Wasim picked as Pakistan name Babar Azam-led squad for T20 World Cup | Crickit
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Haris Rauf returns; Mohammad Amir, Imad Wasim picked as Pakistan name Babar Azam-led squad for T20 World Cup

May 24, 2024 09:44 PM IST

Babar Azam will lead the side after he was reinstated as the white-ball captain earlier last month, replacing Shaheen Afridi.

Pakistan fast bowler Haris Rauf will return to the impending T20 World Cup, which begins from June 1 onwards in the USA and the West Indies, after he recovered from an injury, as the PCB named their 15-man squad for the ICC tournament. He last played for the side in January this year. Babar Azam will lead the side after he was reinstated as the white-ball captain earlier last month, replacing Shaheen Afridi.

Pakistan's Mohammad Amir, second right, celebrates with teammates after taking the wicket of New Zealand's Tim Robinson during the second T20 international cricket match between Pakistan and New Zealand(AP)
Pakistan's Mohammad Amir, second right, celebrates with teammates after taking the wicket of New Zealand's Tim Robinson during the second T20 international cricket match between Pakistan and New Zealand(AP)

“This is an extremely talented and balanced side that has a mixture of youth and experience," the PCB said in its statement. "These players have been playing together for some time and look well-prepared and settled for next month’s event. “This is an extremely talented and balanced side that has a mixture of youth and experience. These players have been playing together for some time and look well prepared and settled for next month’s event.

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“Haris Rauf is fully fit and bowling well in the nets. It would have been nice if he had gotten an outing at Headingley, but we remain confident that he will continue to maintain an upward trajectory in the upcoming matches, as he will have an important role to play along with other strike bowlers in the T20 World Cup.”

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While the likes of Abrar Ahmed, Azam Khan, Mohammad Abbas Afridi, Saim Ayub and Usman Khan earned their maiden call-up, veteran fast bowler Hasan Ali missed the cut, and will be a prominent absentee.

Pakistan are currently in the midst of a bilateral T20I series against England in a bid to prepare for the World Cup, which they last won in 2009 under Younis Khan's captaincy. They also reached the final on two other occasions - in 2007 under Shoaib Malik and in 2022 under Babar. Pakistan also made the semis in 2010, 2012, and 2021.

Pakistan are placed in Group A with arch-rivals India, Ireland, Canada and co-hosts USA. They play their opener against the USA on June 6 in Dallas before taking in India in New York on June 9.

Pakistan squad: Babar Azam (captain), Abrar Ahmed, Azam Khan, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Rauf, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Abbas Afridi, Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Rizwan, Naseem Shah, Saim Ayub, Shadab Khan, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Usman Khan.

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