Pakistani leader Shaheen Shah Afridi will not be fit to face England in next month’s Test series after undergoing appendix surgery over the weekend.
The left-arm tailor injured his right knee in the T20 World Cup final against Jos Buttler’s England side but still looked to have a chance of playing a part in the three-Test tour in December .
But the 22-year-old’s name was missing from an 18-person squad assembled by the Pakistan Cricket Board, due to unexpected appendicitis. He will now have to rest for up to a month before completing rehabilitation on his knee.
Fast and boundless Mohammad Ali was called in his place, with mystery spinner Abrar Ahmed, Mohammad Wasim Jnr and Zahid Mehmood completing a quartet of new faces.
Hasan Ali, who played for Lancashire earlier this year, veteran batsman Fawad Alam and leg beater Yasir Shah have been dropped from the squad that faced Sri Lanka most recently.
Abrar arrives after emotional performances in the top-class Quaid-e-Azam Trophy, winning five five-wicket runs in six matches with 43 scalps at 21.95. Mohammad Ali, meanwhile, has been the country’s most prolific domestic pace setter for the past two seasons.
Head coach Muhammad Wasim said: “I would like to congratulate all the players who have been selected for the historic test series against England. This series provided opportunities for Abrar Ahmed, Mohammad Ali, Mohammad Wasim Jnr and Zahid Mehmood.
- 1st test: December 1 to 5, Rawalpindi
- 2nd test: December 9-13, Multan
- 3rd test: December 17-21, Karachi
“Abrar has been on the radar since his first premier season in 2020-21. He’s been in exceptional form this season, so it makes sense to make him available to Babar Azam so he can use the youngster’s confidence and talent in the upcoming series. “Mohammad Ali has shown great patience and control, and his numbers speak for his consistency. He has been our best fast bowler in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy with 56 wickets at an average of 24 over the past two seasons.
“I’m confident this team will ensure that the next round of testing against England ends the same way it did when they last toured Pakistan in 2005.”
Pakistan Test Team: B Azam (c), M Rizwan (vc, wk), A Shafique, A Ahmed, A Ali, F Ashraf, H Rauf, I Ul-Haq, M Ali, M Nawaz, M Wasim Jnr, N Shah, N Ali, S Ali Agha, S Ahmed, S Shakeel, S Masood, Z Mehmood.