Pak vs NZ: Mir Hamza, Shahnawaz Dahani, Sajid Khan added to Test squad

Hamza added in squad for two-match series against New Zealand which begins from December 26 in Karachi

Web Desk
(From left) Mir Hamza, Sajid Khan, and Shahnawaz Dahani. — PCB
(From left) Mir Hamza, Sajid Khan, and Shahnawaz Dahani. — PCB

Ahead of Pakistan's much-anticipated two-match Test series against New Zealand, the Pakistan Cricket Board's (PCB) Interim Selection Committee Saturday added bowlers Mir Hamza, Shahnawaz Dahani, Sajid Khan to the squad.

The series is slated to start on December 26 (Monday) in Karachi.

The board's decision came during the committee's meeting which was presided over by Shahid Afridi, who joined the session via video link, along with captain Babar Azam.

Following the decision, Afridi said the committee had a good discussion on the squad and agreed that there was a need to strengthen the team's bowling department to give it the best chance of taking 20 wickets in a match. 

"As such, and taking into consideration recent form and performances, we have added fast bowlers Mir Hamza and Shahnawaz Dahani, and off-spinner Sajid Khan," said Afridi.

“I am confident the inclusion of three additional bowling resources will give Babar Azam more options to field the best available squad for the first Test,” the former captain added.

In the four Quaid-e-Azam Trophy matches, Hamza took 16 wickets in four matches, while Sajid scooped 21 wickets in seven matches. Dahani appeared in only two four-day matches as he was on national duty.

Mir Hamza’s only Test was against Australia in Abu Dhabi in October 2018, while Sajid’s seventh and last Test was against Australia earlier this year in Lahore. 

He has to date taken 22 wickets, including eight for 42 against Bangladesh in Dhaka last year. Shahnawaz is yet to make an appearance in Test, though he has featured in two ODIs and 11 T20Is for Pakistan.

Test squad

Babar Azam (captain), Abdullah Shafique, Abrar Ahmed, Hasan Ali, Imam-ul-Haq, Kamran Ghulam, Mir Hamza, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan, Mohammad Wasim Jnr, Naseem Shah, Noman Ali, Sajid Khan, Salman Ali Agha, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Saud Shakeel, Shahnawaz Dahani, Shan Masood and Zahid Mehmood

Revised itinerary

26-30 December — 1st Test, Karachi

2-6 January — 2nd Test, Karachi

9 January — 1st ODI, Karachi

11 January — 2nd ODI, Karachi

13 January — 3rd ODI, Karachi