The Pakistan Cricket Board on Thursday announced the 15-member squad that will play the first T20 against New Zealand on December 18 (Friday).

As per details, the team includes Shadab (C), Abdullah Shafique, Faheem Ashraf, Haider Ali, Haris Rauf, Hussain Talat, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imad Wasim, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Hafeez, Mohammad Hasnain, Mohammad Rizwan, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Shaheen Shah Afridi, and Wahab Riaz.

Shadab will lead the side in absence of captain Babar Azam who has been ruled out of T20 series due to fractured thumb. The batsman had suffered the injury during a throw-down session, following which he was taken to a local hospital where X-rays confirmed the fracture. Babar will be unable to attend nets for, at least, 12 days, meaning he will not be available for the 18, 20 and 22 December T20Is to be played in Auckland, Hamilton and Napier, respectively.


“His absence in the side will be surely felt,” said Shadab while announcing the squad.

“However, it will provide an opportunity for new players to step up and showcase their talent,” he added.

Shadab further said: “The team should be ready to show an aggressive performance like Babar.”

Earlier, the squad took part in a full three-hour training session.

The Pakistan cricket team had a rocky beginning in New Zealand with eight members of the squad testing positive for coronavirus as the team underwent quarantine in Christchurch.

Pakistan and New Zealand will play three T20Is on December 18, 20 and 22 in Auckland, Hamilton and Napier, respectively. The Pakistan cricket team will also play two test matches against New Zealand on December 26 and January 3.