KARACHI: Pakistan has included in-form batsman Babar Azam in the 14-member squad for the first test match against West Indies to be played in Dubai from 13th October.
All-rounder Muhammad Nawaz has also been included by the selector in the team, which will be led by Misbah ul Haq.
Pakistan’s top scorer in Test cricket, Younis Khan will miss the opening test due to the illness but chief selector Inzamam Ul Haq is confident that Younis will be available for remaining two games.
“Younis has been advised a rest of 10 days by the doctors and he will be back to the squad once fully recovered, I’m sure he will be back before the 2nd test,” Inzamam told media in Karachi.
Opening batsman Mohammad Hafeez, who failed to score in the warm up game for PCB patrons’ XI, isn’t included in the squad.
The batting of Shan Masood and Ahmed Shahzad, despite scoring half centuries in warm up match against West Indies, fails to find selectors’ attention.
But Inzamam insists that door hasn’t been shut on any of the players and all the players will be considered for the matches to come.
“This is or home series, we don’t need to send 16/17 players for the entire tour, these 14 players are for the first test and other players who aren’t considered for the first test can make comeback for remaining matches,” said Inzamam.
“Our domestic season is underway, why to send two three extra players to sit only on bench? I would prefer them to play the matches of Quaid e Azam trophy to remain in match practice,” the chief selector added.
The former captain said that Muhammad Nawaz is included because of his decent record in first class Cricket and his batting ability is an advantage to him.
“I have seen his record, he is also a very promising batsman and can fill the space of a batting all rounder in the team,” said the chief selector.
He also defended the selection of Babar Azam in Test team on basis of his limited overs performance.
“Babar has proved his potential as a good batsman and selection committee has agreed that this player should be groomed in all format of the game,” Inzamam said in response to a question about Babar’s performance in longer version of the cricket.
The 14 member team announced for the first Test against West Indies: Azhar Ali, Sami Aslam, Asad Shafiq, Babar Azam, Misbah ul Haq, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Mohammad Aamir, Wahab Riaz, Rahat Ali, Muhammad Nawaz, Sohail Khan, Imran Khan, Yasir Shah and Zulfiqar Babar.
The first test between Pakistan and West Indies will be played from October 13th in Dubai, the match will be Pakistan’s first day/night Test and will be played with pink ball.