Hasan Ali replaces Naseem Shah in Pakistan's World Cup squad
In a much-awaited announcement, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has finally revealed the 15-member squad for the upcoming ICC World Cup 2023.
The announcement of Pakistan's squad faced unexpected delays as the team management held consultations following a humiliating exit from the Asia Cup and the injuries faced by major bowlers during the tournament.
Chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq unveiled the squad at Lahore's Gaddafi Stadium.
Babar Azam will captain the team, while Shadab Khan remains the team's vice-captain. Hasan Ali has been called in to replace pacer Naseem Shah — who has been ruled out from the tournament due to his shoulder injury.
Ali, however, will be returning to one-day international (ODI) cricket after a year-long hiatus following his last appearance against West Indies in Multan in 2022.
“We were forced to make one change because of an unfortunate injury to Naseem Shah. We had a few injury scares in the recent Asia Cup, but I am glad to share that all the players are fully fit and are eager to perform for their country in the all-important tournament. I have received encouraging reports from our medical panel about Haris Rauf. He has started to (shadow) bowl at the National Cricket Academy and will be available for selection," said Inzamam while speaking during a press conference today.
“I have a firm belief that this squad can bring the World Cup trophy to Pakistan and make the whole nation proud with their incredible performances. It is time to get behind our team and provide them with the backing and support that they need.”
Babar Azam’s side enters the mega-event as the number one ranked side and enjoys the best win/loss ratio of 2.4 in this World Cup cycle for any side that has played the ODI format.
The ICC World Cup 2023 will take place in India with 10 teams fighting for the elusive title across 10 venues from October 5 to November 19, with the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad hosting the tournament opener and the final.
The Cricket World Cup will be played in a round-robin format, with all teams playing against each other for a total of 45 league matches.
The top four teams will qualify for the semifinals, which will be held in Mumbai on November 15 and in Kolkata on November 16. The semi-finals and the final will have reserve days.
Babar Azam (c), Shadab Khan, Abdullah Shafiq, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imam-ul-Haq, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), M Wasim Jnr, Saud Shakeel, Salman Ali Agha, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Usama Mir.
Mohammad Haris, Zaman Khan, Abrar Ahmed.
Source: Geo News