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Shan Masood unveils Pakistan’s batting order for first Test against Australia

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CANBERRA: Pakistan’s Test captain Shan Masood has revealed the batting order for the upcoming three-match Test series against Australia, which will see him playing at number three.

Shan Masood talked to the media after the trophy unveiling ceremony for the four-day match between Pakistan and Australian Prime Minister XI, which is set to start tomorrow.

The newly appointed Pakistan’s Test skipper stated that Imam-ul-Haq and Abdullah Shafique will continue to open the innings while Babar Azam will bat at number four.

“We will continue with the same batting order from the last Test series. Imam-ul-Haq and Abdullah Shafique are settled as opening batters for over a year,” said Shan Masood.

“Babar Azam is our main batter and he has been playing at number four in Test cricket, so we will plan our batting around him.”

Shan Masood further opened up about his position and the role of two wicketkeepers in the squad.

“I played at number three since my comeback to the Test side, so I will continue in that role, while Sarafraz Ahmed will be our first-choice wicketkeeper,” stated Masood.

“However, we can play both Sarfaraz and Mohammad Rizwan, depending on conditions where one can play as a batter.”

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He also showed confidence in Pakistan’s bowling attack and hoped that it would pose a threat to Australian batters.

“We have got a balanced pace attack led by Shaheen Afridi, with each bowler posing a different threat.”

“Mir Hamza and Khurram Shahzad are proven performers in our domestic circuit, having the ability to make a mark in Australia.”

“Mohammad Wasim Jr. can provide us extreme pace with reverse swing, supported by all-rounder Aamer Jamal who also bowls with good pace. While Faheem Ashraf is a seasoned all-rounder who has done well in Test cricket.”

Pakistan’s captain also praised Australian batter David Warner for his impressive Test career, which may come to an end after the upcoming Test series.

“David Warner has been a great servant to not only Australia but world cricket. We wish him the best of luck but we will make sure to make his last series challenging.”

“Australia have an overall balanced side and one of the best bowling attack in the world. We have to play our brand of cricket in all three departments to challenge them and I believe we have a team which can do that,” Shan Masood concluded.

Pakistan and Australia will square off in the first Test match in Perth from 14-18 December 2023.

The second Test match will be played in Melbourne, from 26 to 30 December, while Sydney will host the last game of the tour from 3 to 7 January 2024.

READ: Sarfaraz Ahmed upbeat for tough challenge in Australia Tests

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