LAHORE: Pakistan’s final 15-member squad for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 was announced on Monday by chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq.
Junaid Khan and Faheem Ashraf were dropped from the squad in favour of Mohammad Amir and Wahab Riaz. Asif Ali also replaced Abid Ali in the side. Shadab Khan who was unable to play in the series against England due to illness was retained in the squad.
Fast bowler Mohammad Amir included for the England series had been initially dropped from the World Cup squad. While he did not play in the ODI series against England, Amir has performed well in England in the past.
“The bowling unit during the England ODIs has not clicked as anticipated or expected; if we have at our disposal two vastly experienced pace duo of Amir and Wahab, then it will be foolish not to include them,” chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq told reporters.
On the inclusion on Asif Ali, the chief selector said the batsmen could prove to be an asset for Pakistan in the tournament.
“It was difficult to replace Abid Ali but the way Asif Ali has batted in the series and the way conditions are we felt a player is required on the sixth or seventh spot who can accelerate.”
“There is no panic. I spoke to the captain and coach before taking these decisions,” Inzamam added.
The Pakistani bowling failed to impress in the series against England, leading to calls to make changes prior to the World Cup.
“We are not bowling and fielding up to the mark but the way we are batting I am very confident for the World Cup…Our openers and middle order are scoring runs and we have to sort out our fielding and bowling,” said skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed.
Pakistan squad for World Cup
Sarfaraz Ahmed (wicketkeeper and captain), Asif Ali, Babar Azam, Wahab Riaz, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Sohail, Hasan Ali, Imad Wasim, Imam-ul-Haq, Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Hafeez, Mohammad Hasnain, Shadab Khan, Shaheen Afridi, Shoaib Malik.