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Pakistan’s Playing XI for Asia Cup 2023 opener against Nepal unveiled

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LAHORE: Pakistan announced their Playing XI for the anticipated clash against Nepal in the curtain raiser of the ACC Men’s Asia Cup 2023.

Taking to X, formerly known as Twitter, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) unveiled the lineup for the Nepal fixture.

The lineup features Pakistan captain Babar Azam, his deputy Shadab Khan, Imam-ul-Haq, Fakhar Zaman, Mohammad Rizwan, Salman Ali Agha, Iftikhar Ahmed, Mohammad Nawaz, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Naseem Shah and Haris Rauf.

The much-anticipated Asia Cup 2023 is finally here and it begins tomorrow with Pakistan, the top-ranked One-Day International side, taking on Nepal in the Group-A clash at the Multan Cricket Stadium.

The contest marks many firsts as Nepal, as a team, and Multan, as a venue, make their debuts in the continental tournament. It is also a maiden contest between Pakistan and Nepal at the top level.

“I want to congratulate Nepal for qualifying for the Asia Cup and I hope that their participation will give a boost to the development of the sport in the country. We are looking forward to playing Nepal and I am sure it will be a good contest,” said Babar Azam.

Babar Azam-led Pakistan enter the Asia Cup with momentum on their side. They topped the ICC rankings for ODI teams on Saturday after securing a 3-0 whitewash over Afghanistan in Sri Lanka.

This is the second instance of the team surmounting the chart since April. Pakistan also boast the best win/loss ratio of 2.750 with 22 wins in 31 matches since in this World Cup cycle.

Pakistan will fly to Sri Lanka on 31 August to play India in the second Group-A match on 2 September at Kandy. The venue will also host the third and final match of the group between India and Nepal on 4 September.

Pakistan Playing XI for Nepal clash: Babar Azam (c), Shadab Khan (vc), Imam-ul-Haq, Fakhar Zaman, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Salman Ali Agha, Iftikhar Ahmed, Mohammad Nawaz, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Naseem Shah and Haris Rauf.

READ: “Job not done,” Babar Azam eyes Asia Cup, World Cup glory after leading rankings

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