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Pakistan announce squads for ODI, T20I series against New Zealand

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The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Tuesday announced the squads for the one-day international (ODI) and T20 international (T20I) series against New Zealand.

Shaheen Shah Afridi is all set to return to international cricket after four months when he was named in the Pakistan squads for the series against New Zealand, which will be played in Lahore, Rawalpindi and Karachi from April 14 to May 7.

Shaheen had missed five Tests and three ODIs against England and New Zealand post the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 as he was completing his rehabilitation following a knee injury he had sustained during the first Test against Sri Lanka in Galle in July.

He had subsequently missed the second Test against Sri Lanka, ODI series against the Netherlands, ACC Asia Cup in the UAE and seven-match T20I series in Pakistan.

The 22-year-old, who has taken 99 Test, 62 ODI and 58 T20I wickets, staged a remarkable comeback in the Pakistan Super League 8 when he inspired Lahore Qalandars to become the first side to successfully defend the title.

Not only that, Shaheen’s own performance was outstanding both with the bat and the ball — he scored 133 runs at a strike-rate of 168.35 and grabbed 19 wickets at an economy-rate of 9.13. He was rightly named captain of Team of HBL PSL 8.

Apart from Shaheen, also returning to both the squads are Babar Azam, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Rauf and Mohammad Rizwan. All these players had rested for last month’s three-T20I series against Afghanistan in Sharjah.

This means Babar Azam will resume his normal services as captain in the ODI and T20I series against New Zealand, while Shadab will return to his original position as vice-captain.

Three young guns — Ihsanullah, Saim Ayub and Zaman Khan — have been retained in the T20I squad following stellar performances in Sharjah, while Ihsanullah has also been added to the ODI squad for the first time in his career.

The squad will assemble in Lahore on 6 April where the training camp will commence on 7 April.

Squads

T20I: Babar Azam (captain), Shadab Khan (vice-captain), Faheem Ashraf, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Rauf, Iftikhar Ahmed, Ihsanullah, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Haris, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan, Naseem Shah, Saim Ayub, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Shan Masood and Zaman Khan

ODI: Babar Azam (captain), Shadab Khan (vice-captain), Abdullah Shafique, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Rauf, Haris Sohail, Ihsanullah, Imam-ul-Haq, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan, Mohammad Wasim Jnr, Naseem Shah, Salman Ali Agha, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Shan Masood and Usama Mir. Reserves: Abbas Afridi, Abrar Ahmed and Tayyab Tahir

Series schedule (T20Is to start at 9pm; ODIs to begin at 3.30pm):

14 Apr – 1st T20I, Lahore

15 Apr – 2nd T20I, Lahore

17 Apr – 3rd T20I, Lahore

20 Apr – 4th T20I, Rawalpindi

24 Apr – 5th T20I, Rawalpindi

27 Apr – 1st ODI, Rawalpindi

29 Apr – 2nd ODI, Rawalpindi

3 May – 3rd ODI, Karachi

5 May – 4th ODI, Karachi

7 May – 5th ODI, Karachi

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PSL 9: Basit Ali offers a daring leadership recommendation for PCB

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In order to raise the status of Green Shirts, former cricketer-turned-coach Basit Ali stated in the most recent episode of PSL special show “Har Lamha Purjosh,” hosted by Waseem Badami, that it is a good idea for new PCB chairman Mohsin Naqvi to give wicketkeeper-batsman Muhammad Rizwan the captaincy of the national team.

In order to improve Pakistani cricket, he stated, “I believe that now is the ideal time to name Rizwan captain.” “This is the right time to take this bold step and name him captain. I have some free advice for the newly appointed PCB chairman.”

In the recently concluded Pakistan vs. New Zealand series, he further criticised left-arm pacer Shaheen Shah Afridi’s captaincy, claiming that it even caused his pace to decline. He went on to say, “The 4-1 defeat by New Zealand after Babar’s removal from captaincy is a good enough reason that bold decisions must be made now to prepare ahead of the World Cup.”

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PSL 9 match security details released

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The PSL will see over 16,000 police officers handling security responsibilities since matches in Rawalpindi and Multan will have a security strategy in place.

Colin Munro and Tymal Mills of Islamabad United landed in Lahore, and the team will play Lahore Qalandars to open the season.

Mohsin Naqvi, the chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), announced that the PSL’s ninth season will start on February 17.

He stated that the duration of the traffic closure would be limited and that the public would be notified about other routes through the media in a timely manner. He also directed that effective management be made to preserve fluency for the convenience of the people.

The Lahore DIG Operations Police announced that around 7000 people will be assigned to a security strategy that would guarantee spectators, including cricket players, complete security.

According to the security plan, residents would be permitted entry after completing four levels of security, and 13 SPs, 36 DSPs, and 81 inspectors would be stationed. The situation would also be continually monitored by the Punjab Safe City Authority’s cameras.

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PCB Chairman Mohsin Naqvi requests an in-depth spending report.

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Mohsin Naqvi, the recently elected chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), has started a thorough investigation of the organization’s spending.

The request, which is aimed at the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and Chief Operating Officer (COO), highlights the organization’s careful attention to financial management.

Information obtained from people with knowledge of the situation reveals that the scope of the spending report includes all aspects of PCB’s business.

These consist of funding for the Pakistan cricket team, expenditures for sports personnel, and match-related costs. Furthermore, the report will give information on the PCB’s yearly budget and player compensation.

Chairman Naqvi’s decision is more than just a formality; it reflects a deeper desire to link spending to the national cricket team’s results.

It is believed that Chairman Naqvi is eager to examine the monetary outlays in comparison to the results achieved on the field, suggesting a calculated approach to resource distribution.

Chairman Naqvi is scheduled to call a briefing with the PCB’s senior brass after the comprehensive report has been prepared.

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