Pakistan’s hopes for a triumphant ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup have been dealt a significant blow as fast bowler Naseem Shah’s injury has forced him out of the squad, announced on Friday, September 22.
Naseem Shah, known for his fiery pace and swing, sustained an injury during Pakistan’s Super Four clash against India in the Asia Cup, and he is set to miss substantial action in the coming months, including the World Cup.
This setback is a major loss for Pakistan, given Naseem’s ability to make the ball move unpredictably. His exceptional ODI record, boasting 32 wickets at an average of 16.96, including two five-wicket hauls, highlights his immense talent and contribution to the team.
To fill the void left by Naseem Shah’s absence, Pakistan has called upon the experienced Hasan Ali, a seasoned campaigner who will be expected to step up and deliver on the World Cup stage.
Despite this setback, Pakistan’s World Cup squad remains packed with seasoned campaigners and exciting talents. Leading the batting charge is the prolific Babar Azam, supported by the likes of Fakhar Zaman, Imam-Ul-Haq, Mohammed Rizwan, Iftikhar Ahmed, and Salman Agha. Additionally, emerging talents such as Mohammed Haris and middle-order batter Saud Shakeel have earned their places in the squad.
In the spin department, Pakistan boasts the skills of Shadab Khan, Mohammed Nawaz, Salman Agha, and Iftikhar Ahmed, providing crucial options in the middle overs. Usama Mir adds a leg-spin dimension to the squad, enhancing the team’s versatility.
Pakistan’s renowned pace attack will be spearheaded by the dynamic Shaheen Shah Afridi, with formidable support from Haris Rauf, Mohammed Waseem, and the aforementioned Hasan Ali.
Pakistan’s World Cup campaign commences on October 6 against the Netherlands at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad. Prior to their World Cup opener, Pakistan will engage in two warm-up matches against New Zealand and Australia, aiming to fine-tune their preparations for cricket’s grandest spectacle.
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Pakistan squad for the upcoming World Cup: 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