Inzamam-ul-Haq, the chairman of selectors of Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has announced the 16-member squad for the 2-Test series against Sri Lanka in the UAE. The last time Pakistan played a Test series was way back in May when they toured Windies which was the last series for Younis Khan and Misbah-ul-Haq.
Haris Sohail and Usman Salahuddin have been slotted in the squad as replacements for the 2 legends. Sarfaraz Ahmed will lead the side while Ashad Shafiq will don the duties of the vice-captain.
Azhar Ali has passed the fitness test after having issues with his knee and has been included in the squad. The big news for the team is that the premier leg-spinner Yasir Shah has also cleared the fitness test and is ready to lead the spin attack against Sri Lanka.
The all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez and the leg-spinner Shadab Khan have been dropped while Ahmed Shehzad, who impressed in the Independence Cup against the World XI, could not make the cut. Mohammad Amir will return to the national side after he missed out on the home T20I series against World XI due to the birth of her daughter.
Apart from Yasir, the other spinners in the squad are left-arm spinner Mohammad Asghar and off-spinner Bilal Asif. Mir Hamza, the 25-year-old fast bowler has made it to the side having a wonderful record in first-class cricket. In 46 matches, he has picked up 216 wickets at an average of 19.15.
Pakistan squad for the Test series:
Azhar Ali, Sami Aslam, Shan Masood, Asad Shafiq (vice-captain), Babar Azam, Haris Sohail, Usman Salahuddin, Sarfraz Ahmed (C), Yasir Shah, Mohammad Amir, Wahab Riaz, Hasan Ali, Mohammad Abbas, Mir Hamza, Mohammad Asghar, Bilal Asif
1st Test- September 28 – October 02 at Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi
2nd Test- October 06 – October 10 at Dubai International Cricket Stadium, Dubai