All-rounder Shadab Khan on Tuesday, reacted after being left out from the Pakistan squad for the upcoming five-match away T20I series against New Zealand.
Wahab Riaz, the head of the national men’s selection committee, accompanied by selection consultant Kamran Akmal announced a 17-member Pakistan squad for the T20I series during a press conference.
Leg spinner Shadab Khan was not named in the squad due to an ankle injury, which he suffered during the National T20 Cup.
During the squad unveiling, Pakistan Chief Selector Wahab Riaz confirmed that Shadab Khan was rested from the series as he is recovering from a foot injury.
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Hours after the squad unveiling, Shadab Khan took to his X, formerly Twitter, and opened up on his exclusion from the Pakistan squad.
“Best of luck to everyone selected,” wrote Shadab. “I am currently recovering well from my injury & will start playing 4-day cricket soon.
“We have a culture of disliking those who are selected in favour of those who aren’t. Let’s be positive, support Shaheen and all the players.”
Best of luck to everyone selected.
I am currently recovering well from my injury & will start playing 4-day cricket soon. We have a culture of disliking those who are selected in favour of those who aren’t. Let’s be positive, support Shaheen and all the players. #BackTheTeam pic.twitter.com/whlYybjzKT
— Shadab Khan (@76Shadabkhan) December 19, 2023
For the unversed, social media was flooded with reports of Shadab Khan likely to be dropped from the squad due to his below-par performances recently. However, chief selector Wahab Riaz’s clarification put an end to the rumours.
Pakistan’s squad for the New Zealand series feature a mix of established players, some new faces and a couple of returns.
Three emerging cricketers Abrar Ahmed, wicketkeeper batter Haseebullah Khan and pace bowler Abbas Afridi earned their maiden call-up to the T20I squad of Pakistan while Sahibzada Farhan and Azam Khan returned to the squad.
Farhan has previously represented Pakistan in three T20Is back in 2018.
Explosive wicketkeeper batter Azam Khan was also recalled into the T20I side, after missing out in the last T20I series against New Zealand.
Pakistan’s squad will partake in a training camp from 28 December 2023 to 03 January 2024 in Lahore to prepare for the tour.
In addition to the selected played in the squad, some additional players have also been invited to feature in the training camp, including, Ahmed Shehzad, Omair Bin Yousuf, Kamran Ghulam, Mohammad Amir Khan, Sajjad Ali, Mohammad Haris, Aarif Yaqoob, Shahab Khan and Mohammad Imran Jnr.
Pakistan squad for the tour of New Zealand
Shaheen Shah Afridi (c), Babar Azam, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Saim Ayub, Fakhar Zaman, Iftikhar Ahmed, Mohammad Nawaz, Abrar Ahmed, Usama Mir, Haris Rauf, Mohammad Wasim Jnr, Zaman Khan, Aamir Jamal, Azam Khan (wk), Sahibzada Farhan, Haseebullah Khan (wk) and Abbas Afridi.
Schedule of the Series
First match: New Zealand vs Pakistan, 12 January, Auckland
Second match: New Zealand vs Pakistan, 14 January, Hamilton
Third match: New Zealand vs Pakistan, 17 January, Dunedin
Fourth match: New Zealand vs Pakistan, 19 January, Christchurch
Fifth match: New Zealand vs Pakistan, 21 January, Christchurch.