Rauf, Naseem, Usman likely to be inducted in first T20I against England

Rauf and Usman did not get a chance to feature in the Ireland series which Pakistan won 2-1

By
Sohail Imran
Pakistani pacers Haris Rauf (left) and Naseem Shah (right) in a podcast on August 18, 2022. —Pakistan Cricket/YouTube

LAHORE: Pakistan are expected to field Usman Khan and two fast bowlers — Haris Rauf and Naseem Shah — in the first Twenty20 International against England, Geo News reported Saturday citing sources.

Rauf and Usman did not get a chance to feature in the Ireland series, which Pakistan won 2-1. However, the team management has decided to play a combination of full-strength bench members this time viewing the upcoming T20 World Cup.

The sources said Usman was likely to replace Saim Ayub in the playing XI, whereas Rauf will take place of Hasan Ali. Meanwhile, Naseem will also be incorporated in the team, they added.

They said a pacer would be on the chopping block as the option of playing all-rounder Shadab Khan or spinner Abrar Ahmed was also being considered.

The sources said the final decision in this regard would be taken in consultation with the white-ball head coach Gary Kirsten, who would join the squad on Sunday.

The four-match Pakistan-England series is set to begin on May 22 right before the T20 World Cup, which is slotted to begin on June 1 in the United States and West Indies.

Schedule

May 22: First T20I at Leeds

May 25: Second T20I at Birmingham

May 28: Third T20I at Cardiff

May 30: Fourth T20I at The Oval

England squad

Jos Buttler (c), Moeen Ali, Jofra Archer, Jonathan Bairstow, Harry Brook, Sam Curran, Ben Duckett, Tom Hartley, Will Jacks, Chris Jordan, Liam Livingstone, Adil Rashid, Phil Salt, Reece Topley, Mark Wood.

Pakistan squad

Babar Azam (c), Abrar Ahmed, Azam Khan, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imad Wasim, Abbas Afridi, Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Rizwan, Irfan Khan, Naseem Shah, Saim Ayub, Salman Agha, Shadab Khan, Shaheen Afridi, Usman Khan