PCB announces 18-member test squad for Australia tour
November 20, 2023:
Wahab Riaz, the men’s chief selector for the Pakistan Cricket Board, has announced the 18-member squad for the upcoming Test series in Australia. The tour comprises three Test matches scheduled from December 14, 2023, to January 7, 2024.
Pakistan will face Australia in the first Test in Perth on December 14. The second Test kicks off at the MCG in Melbourne on December 26, while the concluding Test is scheduled for January 3 at SCG, Sydney.
Shan Masood will captain the team, marking his inaugural assignment as Test captain. He assumed the role for the ICC World Test Championship 2023-25 cycle, succeeding Babar Azam last week.
22-year-old Saim Ayub has received his first call-up to represent Pakistan in red-ball cricket following an outstanding season with the bat. Meanwhile, 23-year-old right-arm fast bowler Khurram Shahzad earns his maiden call-up after an impressive domestic season.
Additionally, pace bowling all-rounder Faheem Ashraf has made a comeback along with left-arm pacer Mir Hamza and right-arm pacer Muhammad Wasim Jr.
Muhammad Hurraira and Mohammad Nawaz miss out from the squad that faced Sri Lanka in Pakistan’s last series, while Naseem Shah is also unavailable as he continues to recover from shoulder surgery.
The team is set to gather in Rawalpindi on November 22 for a pre-tour training camp scheduled from November 23 to 28 at Pindi Cricket Stadium. Departure from Lahore is slated for November 30. Notably, the training camp will include additional players: Arshad Iqbal, Kashif Ali, Mohammad Nawaz, Shadab Khan, Shahnawaz Dahani, Usama Mir, and Usman Qadir.
The away Test series signifies the dawn of a new chapter of Pakistan cricket following substantial changes, including the start of a new captain’s era.
Pakistan squad for Australia Tests: Shan Masood (captain), Aamir Jamal, Abdullah Shafique, Abrar Ahmed, Babar Azam, Faheem Ashraf, Hassan Ali, Imam-ul-Haq, Khurram Shahzad, Mir Hamza, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Mohammad Wasim Jnr, Noman Ali, Saim Ayub, Salman Ali Agha, Sarfaraz Ahmed (wk), Saud Shakeel, and Shaheen Shah Afridi